After Long Island schools closed last week and switched to virtual learning to avoid spreading the coronavirus, a local literacy nonprofit donated books to children in need so they could keep reading.
On March 17, The Book Fairies, a Freeport-based organization, opened its headquarters for scheduled appointments and donated more than 11,000 books to eight different schools and organizations, including Northwest Elementary School in Amityville. Although the group had suspended all activities for two weeks, when educators approached the organization about needing books for students who may not have access to much-needed reading material while virtually learning from home, The Book Fairies sprang to action and temporarily opened its doors for scheduled pick-ups.
“We are getting books because we want all of our kiddos and young children and even adults to be reading during this time,” said Natasha Cherry-Perez, the Senior Associate Director of Community Engagement at Uncommon Schools, who came to The Book Fairies headquarters to pick up books on behalf of the organization. “Reading is fundamental. Reading is going to invigorate us and let our imaginations fly while we are trapped inside.”
Founded in 2012 by Amy Zaslansky, The Book Fairies collect and distribute donated books to schools, libraries, and organizations so that people in need have access to reading materials. The group recently donated its two millionth book and broke the record for the longest line of books, 3.81 miles, at two Wyandanch schools in November.
When founding the organization, Zasliansky hoped that the organization would help boost literacy and academic success, produce a love of reading among various age groups, and provide some temporary relief from the various personal struggles people regularly face.
“While distributing books to the under-served is our mission, we felt especially proud today to be able to support our neighbors during this crisis.” said The Book Fairies Executive Director Eileen Minogue.
For more information on the group visit thebookfairies.org or email the organization at [email protected]