A Shipment: From Start to Finish

Screen Shot 2018-04-14 at 9.30.00 AM

It all starts with a fundraiser – like dodgeball tournaments at Bernotas Middle School and Hannah Beardsley Middle School in Crystal Lake, Illinois. These fantastic schools hosted their annual A to Z Dodgeball Tournaments to raise funds for the shipping of books.

A to Z volunteers then hit the local libraries (post book sales) to gather free children’s books. (Library books are especially awesome as the sturdy hardcover selection provides a balanced assortment for our recipients.) Once the books are hand-picked, they are then boxed up, addressed, and bagged. Ready for the post office!

At the post office, the patient postal worker, Donna, methodically weighs each box, types in all of the shipping information, and ensures each M-Bag has a customs form attached to the M-Bag tag.   It’s a process . . .  and the line of people behind us usually grows as we work through each box . . . it takes between 30-40 minutes.

post office cart

Today we shipped six boxes of children’s books to a new country – Pakistan. So exciting! Shearyar Arif Jessani found our nonprofit via the internet and requested an A to Z shipment for a small community library.  The little library will serve as a reading room for children in the area and the boys and girls will be able to check library books out as well.

As always, we are so grateful for our supporters who continue to help us meet our goals and live out our mission to increase the love of reading and get books into children’s hands.

Garden Quarter Family Literacy Night

IMG_20131030_205556

By Mal Keenan

On October 30th, A to Z volunteers hosted their third Family Literacy Night at Garden Quarter Resource Center. Amanda shared The Spirit of Uncle Fernando (El Espiritu de Tio Fernando) aloud with children, modeling reading interaction and strategies for parents, while engaging the families in conversation about this wonderful story.  After enjoying the story, the kids once again selected five books to add to their home libraries. For me – this is the best part – helping kids decide what books go home after talking about what they really like and what they really want to read.