The devastating effects of the Covid 19 pandemic have left many families struggling with limited access to library services, books and literacy materials. Due to social distancing rules and concerns for the health and safety of all, the library’s bookmobile has only recently been able to make its rounds to visit children in the underserved areas of Aurora.
Despite the online resources available to most of Aurora, children in these areas have little or no access to the technology that we often take for granted. These families still need our help to bring these materials to their doors during this time.
The Literacy Gap is Growing in Some Areas
Since the onset of the Covid 19 shelter-in-place orders began in March of 2020, the Library has seen an 87% drop in programming and participation. The Library also reports a 64% drop in reference questions from customers.
In order to help bridge the gap in services, the Aurora Public Library Foundation has developed a partnership with Aurora Area Interfaith Food Pantry and the Marie Wilkinson Food Pantry to bring books and literacy materials to vulnerable kids.
These Hunger Heroes have been working to include resources with the food they provide each month to the families they serve. We call them Literacy Heroes! You, too, can join the ranks of our Literacy Heroes by supporting this program.
Ways to Help
There are two easy ways to help vulnerable kids receive the materials they need to stay connected to books and resources: First, you can offer a one-time monetary donation to help support the Literacy Heroes program or make an even greater impact by sponsoring a child on a monthly basis. Here is the link to the Literacy Heroes sponsorship page https://aplfoundationil.org/literary-sponsor/.
Second, you can Lace-Up for Literacy by joining other library friends in a Virtual 5k Walk/Run. The virtual race is a fun way to enjoy the outdoors either on your own or with your family and is completely pet friendly. You can run on some of Aurora’s best trails, through parks, your neighborhood or even on your treadmill!
Those who sign up at www.laceup.givesmart.com will receive a swag bag filled with cool prizes and coupons from local businesses, a participation medal, and a great race t-shirt. Plus, the proceeds from the registrations will go towards helping our Aurora families receive the books and resources they need during Covid 19.