Did you feel that?
Something incrediBULL just happened right here in Durham, North Carolina. Today a little girl and her family opened up a book. Not just any book. She opened up the 1 millionth book that Book Harvest has put in a child’s hands.
1 million books given to children in a powerful impact statement and it all started with a community of friends, a dream of getting books to children and a bit of space in a garage.
Today’s press release shared how it all began. “I could never in my wildest dreams have imagined this day,” shared Book Harvest Founder and Executive Director Ginger Young. The organization began with a simple idea that Young shared with friends in 2011: as their children outgrew their books, they could bring them to her and she would make sure they got to new homes with children who would love them as much as their own children had. Young knew that book ownership was key to academic success for children, and she also knew that many children right in her own backyard didn’t have the overflowing home libraries that her own children had been privileged to grow up with.”
Book Harvest Communications and Events Manager Daniele Berman shared with us, “Ginger Young founded Book Harvest in her garage in 2011, and since then, our programs have been fueled by donations from people right here in our community -- with books going out and coming in from all over the state, but the majority right here in our hub of Durham.”
Daniele went on to say, “Durham is truly a community that cares! We are amazed daily at the number of people who walk through our door looking for ways they can help: from donating books or money to volunteering to spreading the word about our mission, folks who live in Durham are committed to improving outcomes for our kids and elevating the circumstances of all our neighbors in the process.”
For anyone doing the math that’s an average of 391 books gifted to children a day over the last 7 years. Can you BULLieve that?!
How can you get involved with helping Book Harvest give away another million books?
Whether you’re giving or receiving, Book Harvest wants you to be a part of building literacy in the Bull City. You can give in the form of time, money and/or books, but they also need families to open their home to free books.
For families who want books for their children simply stop by one of Book Harvest’s 11 Community Book Banks in North Carolina (5 of which are right here in Durham) and let your child pick out the books they want to take home. It’s that simple and it’s free. Daniele stressed that its bookS plural. Your little one can pick out all the books their little arms can hold.
More information on family book options and the Community Book Bank locations can be found HERE. Book Harvest even has a program for newborns to receive books called Book Babies. That may be too adoraBULL.
Local organizations who work with children Durham, Orange and Chatham counties can apply to get books provided by Book Harvest as well. Best of all it’s a super simple form that’s easily accessiBULL on their website. No hoops to jump through. Fill out a brief form and press send. It’s that simple. Book Harvest clearly wants to make literacy a stepping stone to success not a hurdle to overcome.
For individuals and organizations looking to support Book Harvest, there several ways you can help give the lifelong gift of literacy. You can donate new and gently used children’s books, or as we call to call them young bull brain fuel. Stop by one of their dozens of Community Book Bank sites, many right here in the Bull City. The also have an Amazon wishlist that makes getting books to young bulls as simple as possiBULL. For more information on donating books click HERE.
Additional ways to expand young Bull City minds include hosting a book drive with your friends, family, church, volunteer organization, band, book club, knitting circle, coworkers, swim team, billiards buddies, beer buddies, sorority, fraternity, mom squad, carpool crew, parking garage posse, Instagram following, neighbors and/or group of undefined terms. Fundraising and volunteering are other options as well.
Today is a great day in the Bull City. A little girl opened a book and tomorrow she’ll open another and then another. It’s the millionth book the Book Harvest gave away, but it’s just the beginning of her lifetime of reading. That, in and of itself, is valuaBULL beyond BULLief.
Book Harvest primary location is located at 2501 University Drive (in the Rockwood Shopping Center). They’re open Monday - Saturday 9a - 5p.