When Sarah Kincaid Cook Chapter NSDAR Regent Sally Czerwinski and DAR Schools Chair Missy Wilkinson learned about Hindman Settlement School’s initiative to place free book vending machines at public elementary schools with dyslexia intervention reading labs across Appalachian Kentucky in early 2023, they knew this was an effort that their chapter should be a part of.
“Upon discovering that three out of five fourth graders in Kentucky were not reading on grade level, our members were moved to take action,” shared Wilkinson. “This fueled our resolve to back Hindman’s initiative, which is taking a pivotal step towards improving reading levels and ushering in a new era of literacy among these Kentucky students.”
What started as an idea for their chapter quickly grew to the entire district–and beyond!
In total, dozens of members and chapters in the Texas State Society District III raised $6,868 to fund the placement of a free book vending machine at Roy G. Eversole Elementary. With this machine students are rewarding for good behavior, attendance, and showing kindness or empathy to others with a golden token that can be redeemed from the machine for a book of their choice, which is theirs to keep!
Since its arrival in early October, the machine has been generating quite a bit of excitement among students who are eager to earn a token and make their selection from one of the many age-appropriate titles available to them. Nearly half of the books featured are from local Kentucky authors or represent diverse voices and themes.
The excitement was compounded when a group of Texas Daughters visited Hindman last week to see the project in action, greet students who are benefitting from their generosity, and provide copies of a graphic novel for young readers on the American Revolution.
Their visit even included a special presentation for the Kindergarteners from our nation’s first First Lady, Martha Washington, which was masterfully portrayed by Kimberly Kimball-Cook, First Vice Regent, Susannah Biggers Bibb Chapter NSDAR.
“DAR remains committed to discovering innovative strategies to enhance and advocate for literacy within our communities and across the nation,” said Czerwinski. “This is just one of the many ways we are glad to support Hindman and we are already raising funds to expand this project in the coming year.”
From all us at Hindman, thank you Daughters for your continued, unwavering support!
Cover Photo (L to R): Sally Czerwinski, Regent, Sarah Kincaid Cook Chapter NSDAR; Josh Mullins, Sr. Director, Program Development, Hindman Settlement School; Lea Humphreys, Regent, Mary Shirley McGuire Chapter NSDAR; Missy Wilkinson; DAR Schools Chair, Sarah Kincaid Cook Chapter NSDAR; Anna Weil, State Chair, Community Classroom, Texas State Society NSDAR; Derek Allen, Principal, Roy G. Eversole Elementary; and Kimberly Kimball-Cook, First Vice Regent, Susannah Biggers Bibb Chapter NSDAR