Philadelphia, PA – June 7, 2018 Community leaders, parents, clergy, educators and environmental organizations joined Senator Art Haywood (D-Montgomery/Philadelphia) at a news conference today to celebrate summer reading and the installment of community bookstands in the district.

“Bringing access to literacy here to the Northwest section of Philadelphia is important. Community organizers, parents and I explored how we could respond to the education and literacy challenge. What we decided to do was to build on what we already saw in the community—little community libraries.” Sen. Haywood said.

What started a year ago as a conversation between concerned parents and community organizers through the Knight Foundation and Philadelphia Foundation’s joint effort “On the Table” discussion, evolved into little libraries on neighborhood blocks. Through community bookstands, children and families alike are encouraged to continue reading all year round.

Haywood said that the project would not have been possible without the support of neighbors, organizations, and businesses that graciously offered donations and volunteer effort through time and labor including: Kilian’s Hardware in Chestnut Hill,; Lowe’s Home Improvement on Aramingo Avenue; Chamber of Commerce of Greater Philadelphia; Sherwin Williams Paint Store in Chestnut Hill; Volunteers and members of the Friends of the Wissahickon; Habitat for Humanity in Philadelphia; and Trades for a Difference.

He also thanked members of the community who donated books, Mt. Airy USA for its continued support in community initiatives, and the hosts of these four community bookstands – Mt. Airy Business District, Belfield Recreation Center, Rev. Chester Williams, and Bianca and Khaleel Adger.

Four community bookstands were installed in the Mt. Airy neighborhood May 25 with three additional bookstands due shortly.