United Way funds summer reading program

Editor’s Note: This is the next in a series of articles about the member agencies of the United Way Alliance of the Mid-Ohio Valley.

VIENNA – The Vienna Public Library received funding from the United Way Alliance of the Mid-Ohio Valley to help pay for the library’s newly revamped summer reading program, officials said.

The $7,000 of United Way funding has been put to good use this summer, although the program is not yet underway, said Head Librarian Brenna Call.

The summer reading program will kick off on June 17 with a magician performance at 10:30 a.m., and an ice cream social at 6:30 p.m., Call said.

The library expects to serve between 400-500 area children through the reading program this summer. The funding was used this year to help make the summer reading program more entertaining to a variety of age groups, rather than focusing on only a certain age group as the library has in past years, Call said.

The summer reading program has been split into four age groups: babies, children, teenagers and adults, Call said.

Part of the United Way funding will be used to pay for the performers and entertainers for all of the younger age groups, Call said. From babies through teenagers, special performances are scheduled at the start of the program in order to encourage participation.

A good portion of the money has been used to purchase books which will go along with the science theme of the summer reading program, Call said. Each of the four age groups for the event has a different science theme.

Books for the different age groups have been purchased and are already available to be checked out, Call said.

Funding has been spent to purchase crafting supplies for story times throughout the summer as well, Call said. The age groups will have varying craft projects which will follow the science theme.

The older children will have access to an owl pellet dissection course, Call said. United Way funds were used to purchase the owl pellets so that children can learn about nature through the experience, she said. The library also plans to have a Center for Disease Control zombie apocalypse training workshop this summer, which is designed to teach children disaster preparedness, she said.

“Zombies are about the worst disaster there can be,” Call said. “This will help teach the kids how to be prepared for almost anything.”

United Way funding has been used to purchase incentive prizes for the different age groups as well, Call said. Each time the children meet a certain number of books-read goal, they will receive one of the incentive prize. These range from cell phone cases to water bottles, and grand prizes in each category include a Kindle Fire HD.