Office Environments donates $8,175 worth of shelving to Gift of Literacy Library

September 5, 2010 at 5:27 pm Leave a comment

Amy Cervantes, volunteer executive director/co-founder of Birthday Blessings, with Cindy Cox, president of Office Environments

CHARLOTTE, NC – Birthday Blessings received a gift of its own recently. Thanks to the generosity of Office Environments, a Charlotte-based business that donated shelving and installation services totaling $8,175, our Gift of Literacy Library Room is now professionally organized, with books displayed on tall and sturdy metal shelving units.

Birthday Blessings’ Gift of Literacy Library Room was established at the end of 2009, following the successful outcome of a grant application through the Charlotte chapter of First Book, a national organization that supplies new books to schools and organizations serving needy populations. This grant award enabled us to purchase over 4,000 new books to include with gift packages for the homeless children we serve.

The good fortune continued when Barnes & Noble – Morrison Place held a holiday book drive, and collected a total of 2,350 books from its customers in that same year, further boosting our goal of giving the gift of literacy to homeless children across the Charlotte region.

Gift of Literacy Library Room before the extreme makeover

But until recently, dozens and dozens of boxes filled with books consumed the small library room on plastic shelves and tables, and were stacked on the floor.

“Book accessibility was a challenge for our volunteers, as was our ability to keep the books organized in age-appropriate categories for easy distribution,” said volunteer executive director/co-founder, Amy Cervantes. “The day that Office Environments showed up and generously offered to step in and transform the room, we were beyond ecstatic!”

Within a week of their initial visit, a crew returned with beautiful shelving units, a large library cart, and a rolling library ladder. Soon after the installation, scores of Birthday Blessings volunteers set to work reorganizing the books and labeling shelves, a process that took several weeks to complete.

Said Office Environments president, Cindy Cox, “We are so happy to be able to help and to know what a great service Birthday Blessings provides to children who need our love.” Office Environments has been improving business environments with custom furniture products since 1984.

“With a national ratio of only one age-appropriate book for every 300 children living in poverty and 3,237 identified homeless children enrolled in Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools, we feel moved to put books into the hands of every child we serve,” said Cervantes. “Because of the generosity of Office Environments, First Book-Charlotte, and Barnes & Noble and its customers, we are now able to include two new books in every child’s birthday gift package and in every Blessing Basket we deliver to babies born into homelessness, and for that, we are so thankful.”

Once per quarter, Birthday Blessings also provides a new book to every child living at the shelters and housing facilities we serve as a special party favor along with traditional treat bags. In total, more than 3,500 new books will be distributed to homeless children each year through the programs of Birthday Blessings.

With thousands of homeless children served annually by Birthday Blessings, our all-volunteer nonprofit relies heavily on in-kind donations.

If you would like to add to our Gift of Literacy Library Room, new books can be dropped at our offices, located at 200 Clanton Rd. in Charlotte, or at our retail partners’ locations, which are listed here.

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Entry filed under: Donations, Grants, Sponsors and Partners. Tags: , , , .

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