May 25, 2023
Surrounded by piles of Scholastic books, Connor Brown from Reading is Fundamental’s national organization could not wait to start reading.
“Reading is one of the very best things you can do to keep learning all the time, everywhere,” he said to Weller second-graders. “That’s why we’re so excited to let you pick books to take home this summer.”
In total, 600 books were distributed by Reading is Fundamental on May 24. The Books for Ownership event was in partnership with the O’Reilly Automotive Foundation, which awarded the national nonprofit a $30,000 grant to support childhood literacy.
“One of our pillars for giving is supporting literacy, particularly children’s literacy,” said Julie Gray, president of the O’Reilly Automotive Foundation. “As a foundation, we believe in supporting the communities where we do business and helping them thrive. As Springfield is our home base, this is a particularly exciting opportunity to give back.”
At Weller Elementary, every student kindergarten through second grade was invited to shop for age-appropriate Scholastic books. The books were distributed by O’Reilly Auto Parts team members from across all areas of the organization including the local distribution center, stores, and corporate office, including O’Reilly co-president Brad Beckham.
Together, they read aloud to students, completed coloring sheets and helped students create their own stories to share.
“We’re so grateful for Reading is Fundamental and O’Reilly for making this event possible for our students,” said Dr. Rebecca Donaldson, Weller principal. “Reading truly is fundamental to a students’ academic success, and we hope this event and these books helps instill a life-long love of reading for our kids.”