On August 7th, elementary students who picked up meals at sites in Belgrade and Oakland had the opportunity to take home a little literary nourishment as well. About 32 new books were delivered to each site thanks to a $400 donation from Educate Maine’s 2020 Book Challenge.
The challenge was designed to get new books “into the hands of as many Maine children as possible”, thereby supporting both students and local independent book stores during this challenging time. District instructional coach Shelly Moody was one of the challenge’s ambassadors for Kennebec County.
“ [District Librarian] Kate Bailey and I were able to select approximately 60 books for this distribution,” said Mrs. Moody. “We worked together to select books that we know our elementary students love! Kate also used her knowledge of popular library books to guide our selections.”
Educate Maine also gave RSU 18 $150 this past spring, which was used in combination with an individual donation to purchase books from the Children’s Book Cellar. This time around, the books were purchased from a new independent bookstore, Oliver and Friends in Belgrade. You can check them out Wednesday through Sunday at 87 Main Street in Belgrade Lakes. Store owner Renee Cunningham also added a personal donation to help cover some extra books. “She is fabulous and was so wonderful to work with, “ said Moody.
Moody said that they look forward to working with Cunningham again in the future on district literacy initiatives and author visits.