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Book Buddies Update – June 2019

Book Celebtrations: All the hard work that Book Buddies volunteers put in this year came to fruition the last week of May at our end-of-year Book Celebrations. This year we were able to provide 60,000 books to 10,000 children in 20 Title I schools in the San Antonio Independent School District. Each child got to choose six books to take home to start a home library.  

End of year book celebration at Crockett Elementary.

Big credit goes to all the individuals and groups who came to our regular volunteer sessions on Saturday mornings and Monday evenings, as well as special sessions for individual groups. They spent hundreds of hours sorting and boxing up those books to ready them for distribution. Special thanks go to the volunteers who painstakingly calculated numbers and assembled the boxes for each school on pallets, labeling them so that the SAISD personnel could load and deliver them properly.

Here is the proud (but tired) team from Reagan High School, who loaded lots of boxes onto pallets.
All assembled and ready to go, the finished job was truly impressive.

Each school got plenty of extra books to be sure there was adequate choice for the children, and each school also received at least one box of Spanish and bilingual books for children who need them.

Book Buddies volunteers are hoping there are lots of kids enjoying hours of fun reading this summer — and passing their books around to friends and family members, too!

BOOK DRIVES: The end of the school year doesn’t mean that Book Buddies rest on their laurels, however. Book drives are still going on, and we’ve been getting lots of books into our headquarters as thousands of books are being moved out. In May we received books from the following organizations:

  • Brandeis High School
  • Keystone School
  • Girl Scout Troop 633
  • Angela Lincoln’s Brownie Troop
  • RVK Architects
  • San Antonio Nerd Night
  • UTSA Trio
  • Kaden Parker’s Eagle Scout Project (1,400 books!)
  • Half-Price Books (Annual Half Pint Giveaway)

And last but certainly far from least: the generous grandchildren of veteran volunteer Bob Amass, who gave us a box of their own books. Bob is a member of the Valero Vanguard, a group of retirees who regularly volunteer to help Book Buddies and many other worthwhile organizations. It’s great to see Abby and Connor following in Bob’s footsteps.

Thanks to everyone who helped to hold a book drive, and thanks to all those who shared their gently-used children’s books with others.

Donations: Book Buddies are not just generous with their time and their gently-used books – they help us out financially, too. Book Buddies is very lean, and we squeeze our pennies (and dollars) pretty hard. But we can’t manage to get everything donated; occasionally we have to buy supplies or pay Better World Books for shipping costs. We are very grateful to the following friends who donated this month:

  • Nancy Anderson
  • Judy Lampert
  • Patricia A. Mabry
  • Taddy McAllister
  • Sheila Swartzman

Financial donations make it possible for us to keep on doing what we do: eliminate book deserts and enable all children in San Antonio to experience the fun of a good book.

Jane Welch, Book Buddies Coordinator

Mary Flannigan