SPD hosted their first “Book ‘Em – Cops & Kids Literacy” event today to coincide with the Campaign for Grade Level Reading’s, National Summer Learning Day.
According to WWSB News, organizers say this dual-purpose event will provide free books for low-income kids, mitigate summer learning loss, as well as provide positive interaction with police.
As seen on their Facebook Page this morning, SPD’s Lt. Lori Jaress joined in on the fun, as she rode down the water slide with one of the kids at the event.
Cops unloaded boxes of children’s books onto tables set up at the event and also handed them out from their squad cars, to foster relationships and trust between SPD and families in Newtown.
“This is a perfect event to build on two initiatives we are focused on – fostering positive relationships between our families and SPD, and early childhood education as a way to equip our kids with the ability to succeed in school and have plenty of options in life,” said William Russell, president and CEO of the Sarasota Housing Authority.
The books being handed out were for children ages 2-12 who live in four low-income housing communities in North Sarasota. Officials say over 960 books will be handed out to over 480 kids. Several different community organizations around Sarasota were involved in the event and helped with all the book donations.