Gold Award book project

LakeView Technology Academy student Carly Nieman worked toward making books accessible to children regardless of race, income or language as part of her Girl Scouts Gold Award project. Her project has helped the culturally diverse and low socioeconomic families at EBSOLA-Dual Language Elementary School.

"It is my heart's desire for all children to have access to books." Nieman said. "To embrace the love of literacy, we have re-imagined book access. Research has shown that students who do not have access to books or choice in the books they read, struggle with reading. This struggle can lead to many issues including low self-esteem, anxiety and the possibility of not completing their high school education. My project has given families the opportunity to select multiple books without the fear of library fines or sharing personal information to get a public library card. Families also have access to books in both English and Spanish. These books can be exchanged as frequently as the students or families desire."

Hundreds of books also were donated to families and community members to build home libraries, and Carly shared information on the importance of reading 20 minutes each day to build literacy skills at home. The space created is utilized to host literacy nights, adult language classes and family activities.