Another Successful Year for RPL's Annual African American Read-In
On Monday, February 4, 2008, Rockford Public Library joined thousands of libraries and schools across the nation and around the world participating in the 19th National African American Read-In. This free event kicked off the Library’s Black History Month celebration that honors contributions made by African Americans in the military, arts, science, business and education.
Rockford Public Library’s Read-In was held at fifteen District 205 schools, where 38 volunteers read aloud from their favorite books by Black authors to 5,470 children, ranging from preschool to sixth grade. The Read-In, in its fifth year and a major component of the RPL’s annual Black History program, has experienced a 415% increase in participation over the last two years. Historically, RPL hosted events at library locations and invited classroom groups to attend. This year, volunteers traveled directly to school sites and were able to interact with multiple classrooms.
"The African American Read-In is a unique event designed to celebrate the richness of African American culture and literature to the whole community. It has proven to be a very successful event at RPL, said Scharnae Walker, Black History committee chair. “This year’s success is partly due to our increased school outreach efforts.”
The African American Read-In is an event based on the program sponsored by the Black Caucus of the National Conference of Teachers of English designed to make literacy a part of Black History Month. For more information of this event, please refer to http://www.ncte.org/prog/readin.
About the Library
The Rockford Public Library, founded in 1872 as the second library in Illinois, currently has six facilities, including the Main Library and five Branch Libraries. The Rockford Public Library’s mission is to enhance community life and development by informing, educating, entertaining, and providing cultural enrichment to all people of all ages by collecting information to address the diverse interests of our dynamic community.