Tuesday, February 27, 2007

Volunteering My Services

I just applied to New Jersey Reads and the Camden County Library System as a volunteer. I really, really hope they can use me. I love volunteering for the Friends In Deed shop, but I'd like to share my love of reading to children and teens who, like my brother Keefe and sister Jessa, are being increasingly discouraged from reading by other distractions.

Reading may have saved my sanity during my childhood. It was a way to escape my troubles, the parental fights and the school bullies and the lonliness of being "the weird one" and visit another place, another time, and meet wonderful characters and "see" different worlds, if only in the mind's eye. I want all children to be able to have that escape, to know there's a place they can go where their parents won't nag and the other kids won't put them down, if just for a little while.
And beyond the escapism, it readies you for life. I see so many of my customers in the Acme struggle just because probably a good quarter of them can't read the sales on the signs or read them well. Reading helps you in so, so many ways beyond school. It's so essential, and it's shocking how many people these days can't understand that.

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