Do good this week with Open Books – Chicago Tribune
Imagine every student in Chicago having access to books and the skills to enjoy them. Thatâ€™s the vision of Open Books, an organization that provides literacy and reading assistance, as well as books and supplies, to Chicagoâ€™s students.
Open Books operates various programs throughout the school year, including creative writing workshops, â€œReading Buddiesâ€ for second and third graders and â€œReadThenWriteâ€ for emerging teenage authors. In this workshop, students work through a text with a volunteer writing coach before writing their own works, which are then published in an annual Open Books anthology.
â€œThe main priority for these volunteers is really just to share their love of reading and passion for literature,â€ said Alison Gerber, Open Booksâ€™ volunteer coordinator. â€œStudents can do amazing things given just that support and focused time.â€
Volunteers who are more interested in working with books can also perform various tasks in the West Loop (651 W. Lake St.) or Pilsen (905 W. 19th St.) locations, such as processing donations, fulfilling online orders, shelving and taking inventory. For a mix of both worlds, volunteers can read to young â€œalmost-readersâ€ on Thursday and Saturday mornings in the West Loop location.
In addition to this programming, Open Books also works to give more books to schools every year. From 2015-2016, Open Books donated just shy of 130,000 books to students through their Booksmobile.
Volunteers with restrictions of a 9-to-5 gig need not worry: With flexible weekday and weekend hours, thereâ€™s a place for everybody who wants to get involved.
Interested volunteers should first attend an information session, usually occurring once a week, to learn more about the various opportunities available. The next sessions are 3 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 11 and 5:30 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 25 at the West Loop location. For more information on how to get involved, visit open-books.org.
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