Students receive gift of reading from Rotary Club

WICHITA, Kan. (KSNW) – Tuesday, thousands of Wichita students had the chance to take home books they had chosen earlier in the year as gifts through the Reading Is Fundamental program with Wichita’s Rotary Club. For more than 30 years, the Roatary Club has supported the program, delivering books to students in Title 1 schools.

“It’s like Christmas day. Two times a year the kids walk in and see the books laid out that they get to pick, and they are so happy and so excited because it’s a book they get to take home and they get to keep it forever,” said Rhonda Willome, librarian at L’Ouverture Magnet School.

Mark Koch, one of the volunteer readers, said the program is one he and the other volunteers especially like doing.

“We enjoy spending time with them and seeing their faces when they get their books and the excitement and getting to read to them, but really just seeing them enjoy the fact that they’re getting a book and it’s theirs.”

However, it also gives them the opportunity to own something.

“I believe that it is important because it is theirs. And they have their name in it, they’ve chosen it, they get to read it, and I’m sure they read it time and time again.”

Willome says she just hopes that the students are able to spread the wealth of knowledge and share their books with others in their lives.

“For them to be excited about having an actual book, and my hope is that they take it home and read with their family and have a family experience, also, of reading a book, is just fabulous.”