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Books Feed the Mind with Food Pantry Partnerships

Jan 31 2020

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Getting books to those in need is a community effort. Through our book rescue, we primarily reach teachers so they can get resources to help their students. But what about learning outside the classroom? Studies have long shown the vital importance of reading and access to books at home. For many underprivileged families books are a luxury, especially when paying for groceries may be a struggle.

To help our neighbors in need – both children and adults – SCARCE works with local non-profits and social service agencies. Over the last few years, we’ve strengthened partnerships with community food pantries to distribute books outside the classroom.

This past summer, we partnered with the Northern Illinois Food Bank for their mobile food pantry. Kids that came with their parents were able to choose books to take home. Not only were they excited to get to choose books of their own, there also was an unexpected benefit: it created a sense of community because families stayed longer.

Since staff is limited, the vast majority of these partnerships rely on the generosity of volunteers to stay up and running. Volunteers from the People’s Resource Center stop by SCARCE each week to pick up about 800 books for their clients. DuPage County Board member Sheila Rutledge stops by SCARCE to pick up books regularly for food pantries in her district. Paul, a long-time SCARCE book rescue volunteer, does double-duty by delivering books to the Glen Ellyn Food Pantry.

DuPage County Board member Sheila Rutledge delivers books to Lutheran Church of the Master food pantry in Carol Stream.

If you work with a local food pantry or social service agency and want to bring a little light to someone’s life with a book, we’d love to partner! Contact us to get started. Together, we can make the world a little brighter for people and the planet.

Would you like to support these programs? Please consider a monetary donation.

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SCARCE is closed through April 30th to align with recommendations related to COVID-19. More Info