Building bookcases, building family literacy! Public invited to donate books!

(Indianapolis, IN) – Thanks to a $5,000 grant from Buckingham Foundation, the philanthropic partner of Buckingham Companies, and the volunteer help of their employees, the Buckingham Bookcases Initiative will take place on Thursday June 27th from 7:30am until late afternoon in the Key Bank parking lot, 930 N. Meridian St. (across from the Buckingham Companies building). Habitat for Humanity of Greater Indianapolis designed the bookshelves, Buckingham employees will build them and Indy Reads Books, the non‐profit bookstore of Indy Reads, will work with 27 Habitat homeowners to select books for their future homes in 2013.

The public is invited to stop by the “Buckingham Bookcases” build site and drop off donated books for the families. Gently used children’s books, or home‐ownership related, are especially welcome!

Literacy is truly a family issue. The number one reason a child will drop out of school is if his or her parents struggle with reading.   Studies show the ratio of books per child in many families is 13 to 1, but in many neighborhoods the ratio is only one age appropriate book for every 300 children. This project is an important step in working with these families to tackle this issue.

Working in partnership, Habitat for Humanity and Indy Reads Books approached Buckingham Foundation and company employees to build and paint 27 bookcases, filled with books for the entire family, for each of the Habitat for Humanity homes being built and dedicated in 2013.

Buckingham Foundation Executive Director Theresa Farrington Rhodes said of the project, “We are pleased to team up with Habitat for Humanity of Greater Indianapolis and Indy Reads on addressing the importance of family literacy. Our employees appreciate the opportunity to give back to our community in a very hands‐on way.”

Travis DiNicola, Executive Director of Indy Reads said, “It is so exciting for our Indy Reads Books staff to be given the challenge of filling a bookcase with a starter collection of books for each family. We’ll make our choices based on surveys the families fill out for us to help us know what their interests are. Each family also gets a gift certificate to the bookstore so that they can go shopping themselves for books!”

Habitat for Humanity of Greater Indianapolis President & CEO Jim Morris said, “Filling the home with an array of books is a great way to help transition the house into a home and encourage the importance of literacy. This partnership is in the true spirit of collaboration, allowing each organization to leverage its strengths to serve.”

After the build, Indy Reads will partner with Habitat to offer Family Literacy workshops specifically for the Habitat Families to offer suggestions on the importance of literacy in their families, and tips for family reading activities.

Buckingham Companies & Buckingham Foundation: www.buckingham‐co.com and www.buckinghamfoundationinc.org

Habitat for Humanity of Greater Indianapolis: www.indyhabitat.org

Indy Reads & Indy Reads Books: www.indyreads.org and www.indyreadsbooks.org