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Wayne County Book Drive supports opening of new literacy library in Southwest Detroit


March 7, 2018

Wayne County Book Drive supports opening of new community Literacy Library on Detroit's Southwest side

Books for a Benefit, LA SED partner with County on effort to increase literacy

DETROIT - Wayne County partnered with two community organizations to create a new library space dedicated to youth literacy in Southwest Detroit. Wayne County Executive Warren C. Evans joined partners from LA SED and Books for a Benefit in a ribbon-cutting ceremony today to open the library. The library is located at the LA SED Youth and Senior Center at 7150 Vernor Highway and is designed to expose young children to books and reading.

"It is so important that our children learn how to read at an early age, as it lays the foundation for their entire education," Evans said. "Not all children have access to books, so we wanted to create a space where children in an underserved community could come and experience the joys of reading. I want to thank La SED and Books for a Benefit for their support in making this a reality."

The library will be utilized by LA SED clients and will be open Monday through Friday from 9 a.m.-5 p.m. It will be utilized by ESL students, citizenship training students, after-school youth enrichment students, senior citizens and summer youth enrichment students.

"LA SED is grateful to Wayne County and Books for a Benefit for the transformation of an old classroom into this beautiful community reading room. It will provide a safe environment that encourages youth, parents and seniors to relax and read a good book," said Mary Carmen Munoz, Chief Operations Manager for LA SED.

The books are targeted for children in need up to age 17. Some of the donated books are in Spanish as part of the County's recently launched Wayne United initiative which is focused on inclusion and diversity.

The facility will house new and gently used books donated to the Wayne County Reads Book Drive, as well as books supplied by local non-profit, Books for a Benefit. Books for a Benefit transformed the space into a library over a two-day period, including painting and furnishing the space, which was paid for by donations from Wayne County employees.

"Our organization aims to support our community by providing access to books and other academic resources through fun and productive environments. We recognize education as a path to innovation and success, and we dream of a world where that path is open to all students, regardless of background," said Nadine Jawad, co-founder of Books for a Benefit. "Our goal is to do our part to encourage students to explore reading in a way that not only promotes academic drive, but also self-expression and a life-long appreciation for the beauty of literature."