While packing up The Gateway office, I came across a red and white bookmark that made me smile.
On one side was a list of “Top 10 Reasons to Read a Book,” which you’ll find below. The other side promoted the Junior League of Omaha’s “A Book of My Own” literacy project.
Reading skills are important. We all know that. In fact, the National Assessment of Educational Progress reports that reading skills are the greatest single predictor of future academic success.
Yet, 16 percent of the Omaha population are functionally illiterate.
What does that mean? The Literacy Center of the Midlands explained: “They can’t read well enough to fill out a job application, read a food label or read to their children.
The A Book of My Own literacy project was designed to put a book in the home and heart of every child from birth to age 14. The program collects, sorts and distributes new and gently used books to at-risk children.
Book drives are held year-round for the program. Donation bins are located at:
Back and Neck Care Center, 2055 N. 156th St.
Ridgeview Animal Hospital, 18142 Wright St.
Walnut Creek Veterinary Clinic, 96th and HWY 370, Papillion
You can also contact the League office at 402-493-8818 or by emailing email@example.com to schedule a drop-off appointment.
WAYS YOU CAN HELP
You can donate money. All monetary donations are used to purchase new books for the project. Donations can be sent to the Junior League of Omaha office.
You can host a book drive. Plan and host a book drive at your school, church or office.
You can volunteer. Contact the Junior League of Omaha office by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org for volunteer opportunities.
Now for the Top 10 Reasons to Read a Book…
1. So you have a place to put your bookmark.
2. You can go on adventures to other worlds on a budget.
3. True, not every book is right for reading out loud in class, but they sure are funny.
4. Books can make your imagination soar to new heights.
5. To give librarians a reason to exist.
6. Reading can teach you all the things that you never knew you wanted to know.
7. The pictures are really cool.
8. Success in reading sets the stage for success at school.
9. Less chores if your parents see you are reading a book.
10. Words have magical powers, just ask Harry Potter.