Library District awarded Ready to Read grant

The Hood River County Library District has received a $4,425 grant to improve public library services to children. The Ready to Read grant funds will be used to create several “mini-libraries” in underserved areas around the county, especially in Odell.

These libraries will be located in areas where children often have downtime with their parents: laundromats, food bank distribution centers, etc. They will include books for small children to help instill in them a love of reading.

The Library District particularly thanks Rep. Mark Johnson and Sen. Chuck Thomsen for their support of the Ready to Read grant program.

The Ready to Read grant was established by the Oregon State Legislature in 1993 to assist local libraries in helping to achieve the Oregon benchmarks for childhood learning and development. This grant, funded by the General Fund of the State of Oregon, is administered by the Oregon State Library. Oregon libraries may use these funds for the statewide summer reading program for children ages 0-14 and early literacy services for children ages 0-6.

The impact of the Ready to Read grant program is measured annually by the percentage of libraries adopting “best practices” in their services to children. The State Library has identified three best practices in youth services at public libraries: summer reading programs, training for parents and childcare providers in research-based early literacy curricula, and outreach to children and teens who face barriers getting to the library. Hood River County Library district offers all three services.

“We are at a pivotal moment in Oregon history as we move forward in implementing the governor’s education agenda,” said MaryKay Dahlgreen, Oregon State Librarian. “The Ready to Read grant program has provided funding for 20 years so local libraries can work with other organizations to help every Oregon child be ready to start school and retain their reading skills over the summer.

“Using their Ready to Read grant funds, public libraries in Oregon will continue their good work of providing early literacy opportunities and summer reading programs for Oregon’s children,” Dahlgreen said.

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For more information, contact the Hood River County Library District at 541-386-2535 or info@hood-riverlibrary.org, or visit hoodriverlibrary.org.

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