Thursday, May 29, 2014 - 10:00a.m.
St. Louis County Library will expand the Sweet Reads mobile delivery service this summer to additional locations in North County starting June 9. Sweet Reads began in 2013 as a partnership with the Hazelwood School District, bringing library materials to underserved neighborhoods during the summer months. The mission of Sweet Reads is to help prevent the decline of reading skills during the summer months, known as the “summer slide.”
In 2013, the Sweet Reads program issued over 3,300 items to 849 kids in neighborhoods near Twillman and Larimore elementary schools. The 7-week run was so successful, that SLCL has decided to expand the program to year-round service and include more communities in the Spanish Lake area.
Colleen Hall, Manager of Outreach Services at SLCL said of the Sweet Reads pilot program: “What we found was that people really wanted to read, they only lacked access to the library. I found kids so eager to read that they found a way to carry twice their body weight in books. I found parents who wanted their children to succeed so much that they were waiting for us in the extreme heat of summer.”
The decline of reading skills in the summer months is a recurring issue for teachers, parents and students. The Sweet Reads van will increase exposure to literature over the summer while offering incentives and encouragement. Students who complete SLCL's summer reading club will be given a certificate that can be redeemed at school for a special reward.
SLCL will bring the Sweet Reads van to locations listed below on Monday–Friday beginning June 9. The Sweet Reads van will feature a variety of books for all ages, as well as registration information for the library's summer reading clubs. In addition, Operation Food Search will provide a free, nutritious lunch at the Spanish Cove Apartments from 12:30-1:30 p.m. through August 8. A library card is not required to check out items from the van, individuals will be asked to return items when finished.
Jamestown Apartments, 9:30-10:00 a.m.
Kathleen Apartments, 10:15-10:45 a.m.
Gateway, 11:00-11:30 a.m.
Villa Lago Apartments, 11:45 a.m.-12:15 p.m.
Windham Chase Apartments, 10:30-11:15 a.m.
Spanish Cove Apartments, 1:00-2:00 p.m.
Spanish Cove/Pool, 2:00-3:30 p.m.
"The Center" at Spanish Lake, 12:00-3:30 p.m.
St. Peters Food Pantry, 9:30-11:30 a.m.
Oak Park Apartments, 1:00-2:00 p.m.
Trinity Park, 2:30-3:30 p.m.
Timber Ridge Apartments, 9:30-10:15 a.m.
Colonial Meadows, 10:30-11:30 a.m.
North County Recreation Center, 1:15-3:15 p.m.
For more information about Sweet Reads, please contact Jennifer McBride at 314-994-3300.