Mentors provide books to local kid’s club

Published 10:45 pm Tuesday, July 24, 2012

By Whitley Kilcrease

Thanks to the help of two local service organizations, participants at the Boys and Girls Club of Pike and Surrounding Counties now have more opportunities to enhance their reading skills and vocabulary.

Alpha Kappa Alpha Alumni chapter, along with Reading Is Fundamental, donated more than 100 children’s and young teen novels to the club Monday as part of a summer book donation project.

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“We’ve done Brundidge for a number of years, but this year we decided to donate to the Boys and Girls Club,” Baker said. “I felt like there was a need there. We like their motto and what they stand for.”

“RIF donates books every fall, spring and summer to emphasize the importance of reading,” said Brandon Williams, program director at the Boys and Girls Club. “They donated enough to us to give books to all of our third- through eighth-graders here.”

Williams said the books are given to the kids to take home and keep, though they bring the books back every day for assigned reading time at the Boys and Girls Club as part of the daily curriculum.

According to Baker, around 150 books were donated to the Boys and Girls Club, including titles such as “Abby Takes a Stand” by Patricia C. McKissack, “Pictures of Hollis Woods” by Patricia Reilly Giff, as well as the multi-generation favorite “Goosebumps” series written by R.L. Stine.

“We want to encourage children to start early and develop a love of reading,” Baker said. “We will continue to give as long as we can.”

Baker said the Alpha Kappa Alpha Alumni chapter has previously partnered with RIF, an organization dedicated to promoting reading in all phases of life. For the past 10 years, the groups have worked together to deliver several thousand books per year in Troy, Enterprise and Dothan.

“It’s a fact of life that to be successful, no matter what you choose to do, you have to have reading,” Baker said. “It’s a necessity of life in order to survive.”

The sorority maintains a grant with RIF where both organizations each donate a number of dollars to buy books.

This allows both clubs to purchase the books at a discount price, resulting in the acquisition of more books for donation.

According to the official website, RIF is the nation’s largest non-profit children’s literacy organization.

Its mission is to motivate young children to read by working with them, parents and community members to make reading a fun and beneficial part of everyday life.

AKA Alumni chapter is a service organization of professional women that gives back to the community through fundraisers and charity events throughout the year, including back-to-school drives, mentoring programs and scholarship awards.

For more information concerning summer programs and initiatives, contact the Boys and Girls Club of Pike and Surrounding Areas at 770-2582. To learn more about RIF and other reading initiatives, visit