In lieu of its annual April One Day for Kids event, the Kiwanis Club of Cloverdale is hosting a book giveaway in the parking lot of Ace Hardware this Saturday, Aug. 1. Each child in attendance will get two new books, and there will be used books available for people of all ages. The giveaway will be from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m.
Cloverdale’s Kiwanis Club has been a longtime champion of promoting local literacy — it has book gifting programs for Jefferson Elementary School students and Washington School teachers and participates in Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library, which delivers new books to Cloverdale kids every month from the time they’re born until they begin school.
Kiwanis co-president Julie Carter said that it’s been difficult to navigate the club’s usual literacy-related activities during the pandemic. In addition to One Day for Kids being canceled due to COVID-19 and social distancing-related protocol, the club hasn’t been able to meet with kids or classrooms.
“We just have been trying to figure out how to do this,” Carter said. “We figure by social distancing and by putting the books out in the open, we can do that. We hope that every kid will come and they can get a couple of free books. We also have a bunch of used books for adults and kids. We just want to let people know that we’re still out here and caring and we’re still working on oodles of projects around town.”
Though other local giveaway events have adopted a drive-thru model, Saturday’s book giveaway will be in-person so people can peruse and choose what books they want. Those who are planning on attending the book giveaway must follow social distancing guidelines and wear masks.
In year’s past, the club received donations for used books from all over, including Cloverdale’s Friends of the Library. Carter said that this year, however, the pool has narrowed a bit. The bulk of books have been from a donation from a member of the Cloverdale Lions Club and from Kiwanis club members.
Though the club doesn’t need more donations of books, Carter said that those wanting to support the club can do so by making a monetary donation to its general foundation.
“Our big fundraiser for literacy, which is the Vineyard Races, has been canceled,” she said. “Our Mother’s Day event was canceled, so donations to our general foundation are what’s really needed right now.”
Most recently, the club announced the cancellation of Oktoberfest, which raises money for its administrative fund.
“We have done a lot during the pandemic. We are still doing our youngest Cloverdalians program, which provides diapers to those in need. We are still working at the food pantry and we have been able to help a number of other community services organizations keep going during the pandemic,” Carter said.
“We’re going to keep on doing the service, we’re going to keep on giving the books, nothing’s going to stop us,” she concluded.