The Gift of Reading

Every year during the holidays, First Book donors give gifts in honor of, or in memory of, a special reader in their life. We are lucky enough to be a part of that special holiday gift. To spread the holiday joy, we are sharing a few of the holiday messages sent with donations made this year:

“Merry Christmas Mom, Your support for children and the wonderful stories you tell are inspiring. I can’t wait for the day your books will be included in these gifts they provide. Love always, Nick”

— Nick Weidner in honor of Donna Weidner

“While I have met many people who are amazingly passionate about education thus far in my lifetime, I have never met someone as passionate about children and their education as my Grammy. Not only this, but I have yet to meet someone who adored reading as much as my Grammy did. I could not Imagine finding a better cause to donate to an honor of her – unless it also involved chocolate… haha! Grammy worked with numerous students who had a variety of abilities. Grammy’s passion for her students, education, and reading never wavered; She is a model of the educator I aspire to be. Grammy radiated kindness, compassion, and optimism without ever seeking recognition. I don’t believe there are enough words to elaborate on what an amazing person my Grammy was, or how much my Grammy means to me, but I do know this: Grammy was passionate about reading and education unlike any other person I’ve met, and if Grammy was here today, she would be overjoyed to know about this program.”
— Sydney Shadrick in memory of Carol (Grammy) Shadrick

“Ms. Corson, Best wishes for the holidays and a great new year. Thank you for all that you do for us. With this donation in your honor, other children will have the gift of reading. They may not be lucky enough to have you for a teacher, but they’ll have a nice new book to bring home. Love, Your class of 2020.”

— Stefanie Mcardle Taylor in honor of Liz Corson

“You make a difference. “Once upon a time, there was a wise man who used to go to the ocean to do his writing. He had a habit of walking on the beach before he began his work. One day, as he was walking along the shore, he looked down the beach and saw a human figure moving like a dancer. He smiled to himself at the thought of someone who would dance to the day, and so, he walked faster to catch up. As he got closer, he noticed that the figure was that of a young man, and that what he was doing was not dancing at all. The young man was reaching down to the shore, picking up small objects, and throwing them into the ocean. He came closer still and called out “Good morning! May I ask what it is that you are doing?” The young man paused, looked up, and replied “Throwing starfish into the ocean.” “I must ask, then, why are you throwing starfish into the ocean?” asked the somewhat startled wise man. To this, the young man replied, “The sun is up and the tide is going out. If I don’t throw them in, they’ll die.” Upon hearing this, the wise man commented, “But, young man, do you not realize that there are miles and miles of beach and there are starfish all along every mile? You can’t possibly make a difference!” At this, the young man bent down, picked up yet another starfish, and threw it into the ocean. As it met the water, he said, “It made a difference for that one.” ― Loren Eiseley”
— Margo Myles in honor of John Gonder

“Grandpa, I wanted to donate to a charity in your name that I knew you would appreciate. This organization gives books to children. I thought it was perfect for you. Love, Katrina and Joaquín”

— Katrina and Joaquin Godfrey in honor of Jim Tanner

Our many thanks to these donors for their permission to share these wonderful holiday messages, and for their support of our mission. Together, we provide children in need with the gift of reading this holiday.

Click here to make a gift to honor a very special reader in your life this holiday.

image of a girl holding a stack of books. There is a blue box in the top, left corner with text that reads, 'Double your impact to help give a million books!' There is also a red box in the bottom, right corner with text that reads, 'Donate now'.