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FUMC donates books, shelves to students

By Submitted, 05/17/18 7:36 AM

Members of the bookshelf building project at First United Methodist Church Bob Lewis, Jerry Monroe, Diane Willmon, and FUMC Minister Steve Johnson, along with Marlon Ward and Dan Rohrbaugh, presented handmade single-shelf bookshelves stocked with books to first graders in the Clinton Primary School Early Literacy Program here Wednesday. Ward also read the group a story from one of the book selections. – Ken McLemore/Hope Public Schools

HOPE – Clinton Primary School first grade students who have excelled in reading will have the beginnings of their own library as the result of a donation of children’s books and bookshelves to the early literacy program at Clinton Primary School.
The First United Methodist Church donated books and bookshelves to first graders selected from the early literacy program Wednesday.
Each of the 33 children received a selection of books already shelved in a free-standing single shelf built by FUMC members. Both the bookshelf and books become the property of each child, and are donated to encourage summer reading, according Marlon Ward, FUMC member.
“This is the fourth year that we have done this; and, it’s something that Dan Rohrbaugh saw done elsewhere and brought to us to do,” Ward said.
She said more than 100 stocked bookshelves have since been built and donated to CPS students.
Rohrbaugh said the idea comes from a history of literacy encouraged by the pioneer circuit-riding Methodist ministers in Arkansas, who provided books to families in their preaching circuit.
Most of the books are purchased with funds raised from the annual FUMC Fourth of July Celebration, and volunteer donations, as well as the donation of slightly used books, Ward said. The church also accepts donations of slightly used books, she said.
Bookshelf builders included Rohrbaugh, Bob Lewis, Jerry Monroe, and Diane Willmon. Ward and Carey Rohrbaugh spearheaded the book collection.