Books Are Wings brings books and people together. Without our partnerships, we cannot impact the community on the scale we hope to. Through our Books All Year program, we work with partner schools to support literacy efforts during the school year. With our Book Request programs we can offer books for community events. As we enter this new year, we are deepening our work with community organizations that serve families on the front line.
On a recent winter afternoon, Executive Director Jocelynn led a training for Communities For People clinicians and staff. The training focused on sharing the scope of Books Are Wings programming and the available resources we have. The mission of CFP is “To foster hope in the lives of at-risk children and families and to enrich their capabilities, enabling them to flourish as contributing members of the community.” CFP has clinicians and staff that are working with foster families to offer them high quality resources to support the development of young people.
Jocelynn spoke about the importance of reading to a child every day, and how a child who has been read to daily enters kindergarten with a million more words than a child who has not had books and reading as part of their daily routine.
While she shared background on BAW programming, Jocelynn used the time to hear from clinicians and staff about their needs. One clinician asked about how to increase parent “buy in” to books, with Jocelynn sharing ideas about building habits and modeling for parents by letting children choose the books they were most excited about and reading during home visits. Another staff member asked about how to encourage more regular reading, and Jocelynn shared the idea of a special area designated for reading, with a comfy chair, or simply a place like a basket where all books are gathered.
At a follow up training, BAW will work to support the CFP team in how to engage in these practices at home and site visits. Additionally, clinicians asked for books in Spanish, and we were able to offer some at the end of or session for CFP staff to take to families. We are always looking for Spanish books, and books in a variety of languages, so community members with multi-lingual books can learn more about book donation here: https://www.booksarewings.org/donate-books/
BAW looks forward to continuing this partnership and supporting the families and staff involved with CFP in building strong reading habits, and building family libraries.
To learn more about Communities for People and their critical work, visit: https://www.communities-for-people.org