Stand With Camden Celebrates Read Across America Day With Forest Hills Elementary


Booksmiles Founder Larry Abrams pictured collecting books to distribute

Helene Usher, Editor

Read Across America Day occurs annually on March 2 in honor of famous children’s author Doctor Seuss’ birthday. The purpose of this day is to encourage kids of all ages to read more and realize how enjoyable it can be to do so. Unfortunately, not everyone has access to a library or has books at home, especially during the pandemic. The pandemic has also kept many younger children, who are not yet able to read, from enjoying stories that normally may have been read to them in school. HMHS’s Stand With Camden Club decided to partner with Forest Hill Elementary School in Camden and tackle this issue as their main project of the year, Camden Reads. Camden Reads officially began on MLK Day (January 18). Students submitted recordings of themselves reading their favorite children’s books, and those recordings were then sent to Forest Hill Elementary to be shown in its classes. Stand With Camden also started collecting new and gently used books for their annual Booksmiles Drive, which continues through Read Across America Day. 

Booksmiles is a nonprofit organization in Philadelphia that donates books to those living in communities without libraries or who cannot afford to buy them. On this day, members of Stand With Camden will also be participating in their final Camden Reads event: they will be reading to six classes of students from Kindergarten to grade 3 at Forest Hill live over Google Meet! Those who volunteered for this event are making such a positive impact on the students’ experiences at school and should be so proud that they are doing so. In a year where it has been hard to figure out how to make a difference in our local communities, Stand With Camden has found a wonderful way.

The Book Drive will continue through the week. The donation bin is located in the library. Please try to help Stand With Camden meet their goal of 1,000 books!


Forest Hills Elementary Students