We are pleased to announce the winner of the 2018 Estela & Raúl Mora Award!

We are pleased to announce that the winner of the 2018 Estela & Raúl Mora Award is …

Johnson City Library in Johnson City, Texas!

The Johnson City Library in Texas aimed to connect children with books, stories, language, and cultures.

The library’s dual celebrations—one in the morning for pre-schoolers and one in the afternoon for the library’s after-school STEM program—kicked off with a special story time that explained the meaning and importance of Día, followed by traditional Mexican paper flower crafts and other activities, and  a cultural cooking demonstration that resulted in delicious treats.

The day ended in the best way: with every child taking home a new book.

And even though Johnson City’s population is just above 2,000, about 90 people attended the library’s Día celebrations!

Those library wanted to connect children to the world of learning — through books, stories, and libraries. They also set out to recognize and respect culture, heritage, and language as powerful tools for strengthening families and communities.

Both programs started by reading “Book Fiesta.” Leaders then held a discussion for children and families on how reading increases our learning and enhances our spirits. The organizers hoped the children will cherish their free books and that book love will instill a life-long joy of reading.

The library will receive $1,000 in credits to the First Book Marketplace.

Our honorable mentions had exciting days as well!

Watsonville Public Library in Watson, Calif., held a family story time to emphasize the importance of literacy in a fun and engaging way.

The Communities In Schools of Marietta/Cobb County Parents as Teachers program in Marietta, Ga., had multiple craft stations and sent every child home with five new books, many of which were bilingual.

Both programs will receive $500 in credit to the First Book Marketplace.

The Mora Award was established by author and poet Pat Mora and her siblings in honor of their parents and recognizes outstanding schools/programs that celebrate Día (Children’s Day, Book Day) as a way of connecting all children to bookjoy and promoting literacy all year round. Johnson City Library will receive a $1,000 credit for brand new books from the First Book Marketplace, as well as a Mora Award plaque for display.

Learn more about Día (Children’s Day, Book Day)!