February 17, 2018

Seven L.A. School Libraries Get Facelifts

By Kathy Ishizuka

Seven lucky Los Angeles elementary schools will have their school libraries refurbished and restocked with thousands of new books this fall, thanks to Access Books, a nonprofit organization dedicated to enhancing reading in inner-city schools across the city.

Access Books will treat each recipient–which include libraries at McKinley Elementary School in Compton and Lankershim Elementary in North Hollywood–to fresh paint jobs and about 5,000 new books. The books, all pleasure reading classics or titles specifically requested by the schools, are purchased with funding from corporations and grants, including the Governor’s Books Fund, says Access Books’ executive director Rebecca Constantino. Volunteers will help catalog the books.

Students also receive thousands of used books, a part of the program aimed at connecting inner-city kids with children from schools in affluent neighborhoods, such as Kenter Canyon Elementary in Brentwood.

Since its inception in 1999, Access Books has distributed more than 600,000 books to L.A. inner-city schools. “We’re planting the seed that this is what readers do–share what they’ve read,” Constantino adds. More information is available at www.accessbooks.net.