Members bring “First Books” to area children

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Members in The Dalles and Scappoose are helping to brighten the future of kids in their hometowns by giving them free books to take home through AFT's partnership with the "First Book" organization. First Book is a a national non-profit that has distributed more than 100 million new, high-quality books to kids across the country.

“United Employees of Columbia Gorge Community College members are very excited to be part of this project with First Book,” said Rebecca Brochu, Local 4754 (UECGCC) Publications Officer. “It is so important for young children to have books at home to strengthen their reading skills, but many families struggle to just feed and clothe their kids.”

On May 15, members of Local 4754, United Employees of Columbia Gorge Community College (UECGCC) distributed free books to local children during the College’s Spring Cultural Fest . The books were available in both English and Spanish at varying difficulty.  AFT-Oregon President David Rives was there to help kick off the event. The Local will host another First Book event on Friday, May 23rd: 5:30-8 p.m., CGCC, Hood River campus as part of Latino Family Night.

Local 3662, Scappoose Federation of Classified Employees  will host a similar giveaway program for students at Grant Watts Elementary, in Scappoose, on May 19. Members there will give “First Books” to kindergartners during library time.

Literacy is a key factor in quality of life for every person.  But, statistics have shown that only one in three children in low-income areas have access to books in the home. First Book partnerships with AFT affiliates nationwide are designed to help tackle this problem.