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Books For Brooks

Books imagesThis post is way off-topic, but bear with me.


How can you help out some deserving kids while ridding your house of clutter?

For the last 3-4 years, my wife and I (with a lot of help from another volunteer) have set-up and run a program where we distribute books to kids at Pickle Elementary in East Austin.  Pickle Elementary is like a lot of schools in East Austin.  It is an under-privileged school  — just over 97 percent of the kids qualify for free or reduced lunch.  And the last statistics I saw found that over 65 percent of the kids come from primarily Spanish-speaking homes.

Three or four years ago, we were approached  by the principal of the school about helping out.  We asked what she needed, and she said the number 1 thing they wanted to do was put books in the hands of their kids.  She had research showing that one of the best predictors of school success was whether a child was on reading level in the second grade. 

Armed with her request, we went to work.  Since that time, we have set up a program where we collect books and then go to the school 3-4 times per year to distribute the books to the kids.  In the time that we’ve done it, we’ve distributed over 10,000 books to these children. 

And you can’t imagine how appreciative those kids are.  Whether finding the perfect mystery, the perfect book for a younger sibling, or, in one of my favorite memories, finding that perfect book about leaches, these kids appreciate what we are doing for them.

But the program doesn’t work without A LOT of help from others. 

Including some of you.

As we all gear back up for the start of the new school year, we’re starting to plan our first book drive of the year.  And we need more books.  That’s where you come in.  If any of you have any gently-used children’s books that you’re looking to get rid of or that are just sitting on bookshelves unused, please consider donating them to this worthy cause.   You’ll be helping these kids in ways you can’t imagine, and cleaning out your house at the same time.  What a benefit!

So if you can help, please let me know.   If you’re in the Austin area, I’ll come pick them up from you to make this donation as painless as possible.



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