CAO Book Drive
Looking for a way to give back to the community and also support a fellow County department, staff at the County Administrator’s Office (CAO) reached out to the County Library to host a book drive at their offices.
The CAO teamed up to purchase old favorites, fun board books, early reader books, and a variety of others to be donated to children visiting incarcerated parents or guardians at Santa Rita and Glenn-Dyer Jails. Nearly 140 children’s books and cash donations were collected for Start With a Story – a great feat during an already busy holiday season!
In the U.S., an estimated 2.7 million children, ages 5-18, have a justice-involved parent and around 10 million children experience parental incarceration at some point in their lives.
An Alameda County Librarian who runs the jail’s inmate literacy services initiated Start With A Story in early 2007 after watching children wait in line for hours — often an entire day — to spend a few minutes with their incarcerated loved ones. An untapped opportunity to provide literacy outreach to these youngsters was recognized, and since then, Start with a Story has delivered story times, free books, and family literacy activities to children, 0-16 years old, who come for visits at Alameda County jails.In 2018, roughly 2,300 books were distributed through Start With a Story.
For more information on Start With a Story and how you can help, contact Lisa Harris, Director of Social Justice Services at firstname.lastname@example.org or Raul Rodriguez, Jails Literacy Specialist at email@example.com.