HCOE, Rotary Clubs Team Up For Early Literacy

This is a press release from the Humboldt County Office of Education’s:

The Humboldt County Office of Education’s (HCOE) Decade of Difference Early Literacy Partners Program, in partnership with HCOE’s Special Beginnings program, have teamed up with local Rotary clubs to promote early literacy to local preschoolers.

The Special Beginnings program assists children under five years of age with developmental delays by providing special education services. This program helps to prepare them to transition successfully into Kindergarten programs in traditional school settings.

Seven Rotary and Rotaract Clubs have provided time and monetary contributions to purchase three highly recommended books by local preschool educators (All Around Me; Bear Wants More and Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See) to each of the 182 children in the Special Beginnings program.

Principal of Special Beginnings, Genevive Macias is grateful for the support. “Being able to provide families with high quality literature for their little ones is wonderful and gives them the tools to be engaged and support their child’s learning.”

Superintendent of Schools, Dr. Chris Hartley agrees. “The importance of reading to and with our children is critical to their skill development, creativity, concentration, and interest in learning while providing precious moments with parents and others to relax and connect.”

Rotary partners in this effort included: The Rotary Club of Arcata Sunrise, Rotary Club of Eureka, Rotary Club of Ferndale, Rotary Club of Fortuna, Rotary Club of Fortuna Sunrise, Rotary Club of Southwest Eureka, and the North Bay Rotaract Club.

Members from the respective clubs met on Wednesday afternoon, following the HCOE Board of Trustees meeting to wrap up the books into individual gift bags and prepare them for delivery to families by the Special Beginnings staff.

“We at the Rotary Club of Southwest Eureka have been helping humanity since 1969,” stated Club President, Eddie Morgan. “We not only help globally, we also like to help locally. This partnership has been tremendous, and shows how local business people can make a difference; support people in our community who need it, and make things happen.”

“Our tremendous thanks to our local Rotarians for the gift of books and their time, energy and resources to children in our county,” complemented Hartley.

Rotary is an international service organization whose stated purpose is to bring together business and professional leaders in order to provide humanitarian service and to advance goodwill and peace around the world. Many local clubs have made early literacy for children a top priority and mission in their collective efforts.

The Early Literacy Partners Program supports students in preschool through second grade who are reluctant or struggling with reading or math by placing them with community volunteers who work one-on-one with them during school hours twice a week.

For more information about the Early Literacy Partners Program or if you are interested in getting involved, please visit www.hcoe.org/elp or contact Olivia Kernen at (707) 445-7007.

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