AMARILLO, TX (KFDA) - A young nonprofit that provides books to children is in need of sponsors.
Storybridge volunteers gathered at Lamar Elementary today to distribute new and gently used children's books to kids in the area who may not have a book collection of their own.
"It helps you learn for next year when you read," said Clara. "I'm in 6th grade now, so I'm going to read these books and then it'll help me read other books that are harder."
Storybridge is working to help tackle, what they call, the "summer slide".
Fifth grade reading teacher Juli Thrall said it's challenging to get students to read when school isn't in session.
"I know a lot of my students come back and say 'I didn't read anything over the summer' and so actually getting parents involved with the books, I think helps," said Thrall. "I know a lot of kids in this community don't always have the opportunity to either go to the library or go out and purchase books so this an easy way for them to come and get free books."
Thrall added that students lose one to two reading levels every summer if they don't continue to read.
Storybridge director Chandra Perkins said thousands of children in our city are in need of age-appropriate books at home.
"We know from research that two out of three low-income families do not have any age appropriate books at the house for their children, so the need in our city is great." said Perkins. "We have thousands of children in the city that go home, and we say 'read, read, read at home' and they go home and there's not books there. So, our number one goal is to get books there."
At every Storybridge event, anywhere from 500 to 1,500 books are donated to children in need.
However, they can't continue to do it without help from our community.
"We are in the process of approaching some businesses looking for corporate sponsors, businesses who are willing to commit to investing in this project with us and sponsoring one of our Title I elementary schools that will help us provide books for that area," said Perkins. "I would love Amarillo businesses to step up and invest in our kids like this."
Perkins went on to say getting local businesses to support their program is crucial to student success.
"It's important for our children and families to know that their community is behind them and their community is cheering for their education," said Perkins. "We want the future of Amarillo to be bright and we want these kids to be able to graduate ready for the next step after high school."