The Rotary gets literary, literally

In a digital time where it might seem easy to let print books get lost for our kids, the Hoboken Rotary has ensured the opposite for local Hoboken tots year over year. This year they distributed 430 books to the first grade students and 384 dictionaries to third grade students of the following schools: All Saints School, Hoboken Catholic Academy, Hoboken Charter School, Elysian Charter School, Mustard Seed School, Connors, Wallace, HoLa Dual Language, Calabro and Stevens Cooperative School.

The Hoboken Rotary is a local club that has been actively contributing to the community for over 90 years. Each year the Hoboken Rotary raises funds to support local causes as well as significant needs across the country and throughout the world. (Last year, they played a key role in fundraising efforts post the Hoboken Charter School fire).

Chairperson of their literacy program Marie Stinson-Wade, explained that local first graders get personalized books delivered, while local third graders receive dictionaries to help prep them for the 4th grade Spelling Bee that the Rotary sponsors.

So how does it work? The Rotary contracts Gina Deluca of Giggle House Books to provide personalized books for the first graders. Each year the book is completely different. In the past they have had “School is Fun” and “My Trip to the Firehouse.” Every book has the child’s name in it along with their teacher and friends as characters in the book! Which is pretty awesome.

The Hoboken Rotary accepts local donations in easy, nominal numbers for anyone that wants to help donate a dictionary or personalized book. After all of the books are ordered, distribution days are held at the varying schools. Chairperson Marie Stinson Wade and Phil DeFalco delivered "The Cottontail Mystery" to first graders and dictionaries to third graders at Hoboken Catholic Academy last week.

Any fundraising that keeps children reading real books is a worthy cause! Keep your eyes and ears open next year for the Hoboken Rotary literacy program so that you can help donate a dictionary or personalized book.

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