More than two months after Superstorm Sandy, most children have returned to their damaged schools. Many of the schools, however, are having to start over, especially when it comes to replacing ruined books. But there’s one charity that has stepped up to help.Sandy not only destroyed thousands of homes, it also damaged the perception kids have of the safe world around them.
Hundreds of schools suffered damage to their buildings, but what’s not as apparent is the damage on the inside — specifically the hundreds of thousands of books that were ruined. So Kids in Distressed Situations and publishing partner Scholastic has decided to help replace them. Together, they are donating 1 million books to schools and libraries that suffered damage during the storm. So far, about 500,000 books have been committed to more than 100 schools in the tri-state area.
The pickup of several thousand brand new books donated by Scholastic and K.I.D.S. at partner agency Community Food Bank of New Jersey was a morning filled with smiles and hope for the future. Each of the representatives of several area schools – The OLC School and Little Harbor Academy, Union Beach School and Red Bank Primary School – expressed happiness and relief at finally being able to start stocking up the libraries that were so badly damaged by Hurricane Sandy’s flood waters.
Wanda Rodriguez, Director of the Kids Division at the Community Food Bank, was thrilled to be able to play a part in providing what she says are probably one of the most essential items to help a child ensure his or her future. “Being able to read is a need, not a luxury. Every child deserves to have access to books,” she says.
Students from the OLC School look over books donated by children’s book publisher Scholastic Inc. in Jersey City, New Jersey, January 8, 2013. Schools in New York and New Jersey that suffered damage due to Hurricane Sandy will receive one million books from Scholastic with the help of K.I.D.S. to replace those destroyed in the storm. INSIDER IMAGES/Keith Bedford/Scholastic