Monthly Archives: November 2012

Chick Fil A Percentage Night: Tuesday Nov. 27th

The Athens east-side Chick Fil A is hosting a percentage night to help Books for Keeps kick off its holiday campaign. We’re attempting to find sponsors for 745 more students in 35 classes at our last two schools, and the funds we raise at this percentage night will certainly help.BFK volunteers will be on hand to answer any questions from people who want to share the gift of reading with a child in need. $25 provides 12 books, plus a tote bag for transport, to 1 child.Will you share this post on your Facebook page?  There’s no limit on the amount Chick Fil A will donate, so the more people we reach, the more children we’ll reach. Chick Fil A, 1870 Barnett Shoals Road, 5-10pm on Tuesday November 27. See you there!

By |November 26th, 2012|Uncategorized|Comments Off on Chick Fil A Percentage Night: Tuesday Nov. 27th|

Books for Keeps Launches Campaign to Sponsor 745 Children in 5 Weeks

For Immediate Release: Nov. 26, 2012BOOKS FOR KEEPS LAUNCHES CAMPAIGN TO SPONSOR 745 CHILDREN IN 5 WEEKS745 more students. That is how close Books for Keeps is to providing 12 books to every child attending five Athens elementary schools, for the second year in a row.  “Books for Keeps committed to the Clinton Global Initiative that we’d provide 12 books to every child attending a Clarke County School District elementary school where 90% or more of students qualify for free or reduced-price lunches,” says founder Melaney Smith. “More importantly, we made this commitment to the students themselves, when we distributed 24,000 books at five Athens schools in May of 2012. They are counting on us to come back in 2013.”Chick-fil-A on Barnett Shoals Road is hosting a percentage night on Tuesday Nov. 27 from 5 p.m. to 10 p.m. to help Books for Keeps reach its goal.  Board member Whitney Goodstone, a native Athenian, said, “The Chick-fil-A percentage night will kick off our holiday campaign. We must raise the funds to sponsor the remaining 745 children by Dec. 31, and we’ll be on-site at Chick-fil-A to speak with anyone who is interested in helping.”$25 will provide 12 books–and a tote bag for transport–for 1 child. $480 will sponsor an entire class, and Books for Keeps will share the story on its Web site of any group or business sponsoring a class.  Says Smith: “Our supporters are getting creative. A tennis team in Atlanta is holding a round-robin tournament to raise the funds to sponsor a class.  A group of high school girlfriends is pooling their funds and submitting the story of their friendship for Books for Keeps to publish.  Dr. Dean Firschein and Allergy [...]

By |November 26th, 2012|Uncategorized|Comments Off on Books for Keeps Launches Campaign to Sponsor 745 Children in 5 Weeks|

35 classes; 745 children: How YOU Can Help

The 2012 holiday season coincides with Books for Keeps’ biggest challenge yet: to complete the inventory for our May program by December 31st. We have the books we need for 3 of our 5 schools, but lack the books for 40 classes in the last 2 schools – a total of 845 children from low-income families.The books we provide are so precious to the children we serve, and are often the only books they own. These books not only bring joy to a child, they prevent summer slide and exponentially increase that child’s chances of educational – and future – success. You can help, and it’s easier than you think.Sponsor a Child$25 provides 12 books for 1 child (a full summer of reading!), plus a tote bag to carry the books. Make it a gift and we’ll email you a certificate you can wrap and put under the tree.  Sponsor a Class and Send Us Your StoryWhether it’s your business, your book club, a church group or tennis team – sponsor a class, send us some pictures, and we’ll tell your story on our blog. $480 will provide 12 books per child to an entire class of students, and your story will inspire others. Holiday GiftsMake a donation of any amount in someone’s name for the holidays, and we’ll email you a gift certificate you can print and present as your gift.Memorial GiftsMake a donation of any amount in memory of a loved one, and we’ll send a letter to the family or recipient of your choosing. Or, sponsor a class in your loved one’s memory, and we’ll share your memorial on our blog, complete with pictures.The Wimpy Kid FundWe have an amazing [...]

By |November 25th, 2012|Uncategorized|Comments Off on 35 classes; 745 children: How YOU Can Help|

How Many BFK Kids Will Do THIS?

A BFK board member’s son couldn’t wait to read the newest Wimpy Kid, released yesterday. The children we serve can’t wait to read it either – even kids who aren’t wild about reading. $3.05 per copy thanks to a smokin’ discount from First Book – what are you waiting for? Donate now.

By |November 14th, 2012|Uncategorized|Comments Off on How Many BFK Kids Will Do THIS?|

The Countdown Begins…

The good news: we’ve collected all the books we need for 3 of our 5 schools – twice as many books as we had this time last year!  The bad news: we still need books for the other 2 schools, and we need them by December 31st. Why so early?  Most of you probably remember the emergency book-scrambling we’ve done every year in March/April. We’ve always made it, even if at the very last minute.But things are different this year. Sooooo different! Last year, I was able to work full-time, 7 days a week on book drives, hauling, inspecting, sorting and boxing to get the last 12,000 books we needed.  This year, I have a paying job that demands 40 hours a week, so BFK can’t risk a last-minute emergency book shortage.  Last year, Fire and Flavor tolerated our massive book-boxing effort that coincided with their busy season in March and April. We were in their way, but they made it work.  This year, we need to be out of the way by March 1st, to ensure we can stay in our donated space and not adversely impact their production.It was a true miracle that we raised the last 12,000 books we needed last year, but think about it… it’s no way to guarantee that we keep our commitment to the 2,000 children attending the five schools we serve!  What happens to them if we don’t raise the books in time?This year, Books for Keeps is doing things differently. We’re going to raise the books by December 31st.  This ensures we have the books we need for May 2013, and gives us an entire year to get the books for May 2014. How????  We’re going [...]

By |November 12th, 2012|Uncategorized|Comments Off on The Countdown Begins…|

The Wimpy Kid Fund

COUNT:  Goal: 500 books — Have: 313 books — Need: 187 booksNEW: Donate 10 copies ($30.50) in someone’s name, and we’ll send them a letter letting them know. Just be sure to include their name/address on your donation.  The Diary of a Wimpy Kid series releases a new title every November, but Books for Keeps has never (ever!) had an opportunity to get them for the students we serve.  Every May, the children ask for the newest DWK by name, and we are generally a few years behind.  For the first time ever, First Book is offering the November release at a price that’s somewhere close to our price range – $3.05! Unfortunately, while close to our price range, it’s still outside of our price range, and we must raise additional funds to purchase it. Will you make a donation towards the purchase of this book?  $3.05 for the newest book in the series that has been our #1 most-requested book since 2009 – what a weapon in our arsenal to reach reluctant readers and end summer slide.  Hope you will help.How to Donate:Send your tax-deductible donations to Books for Keeps at PO Box 49761, Athens, GA 30604, or use the PayPal button at the top-right side of this page. Thank you!

Student Feedback #2: Athletes and Sports

Each May, after students have selected their books, we ask them “What did you want that we didn’t have?”  In my first post on the feedback we received in May, I wrote about the first of our top 2 requests, graphic novels.The second of the top 2 choices? Non-fiction sports books about current, popular, athletes and teams. Key words there: non-fiction & current!Why are sports & graphic novels the top 2 answers to the question “What did you want that we didn’t have?”  (Hint: It’s not because we didn’t know children love them.) Answer: we can’t find an affordable source.Children were not only shouting out “sports!”, “basketball”, and “football”. They were shouting out names of their favorite athletes and teams.  Finding a source for these books would be huge for our effort to end summer slide: kids will read these books over and over, and in many cases, their parents will be interested too.  Highlights from the students’ wish list: Lebron JamesMichael JordanJalen RoseAdrian PetersonCam NewtonJulio JonesKobe BryantGeorgia BulldogsAtlanta HawksAtlanta FalconsBasketballFootballSoccerWrestling How do we get books about these athletes, sports, and teams?  With an absolute maximum budget of $2 per book, we certainly won’t be able to buy them.We are looking for volunteers to help us tackle this problem.  Many of the famous athletes have foundations to help low-income children… sports teams do all kinds of philanthropic projects… Sports Illustrated even has an entire line of children’s books, but how do we get a foot in the door?Can you help? This is going to be a challenge for Books for Keeps for years to come, unless we change our approach and find volunteers to focus on this issue.NBA Read to Achieve  Basketball books! [...]

By |November 3rd, 2012|Uncategorized|Comments Off on Student Feedback #2: Athletes and Sports|