By Susan Motander
Monrovia Reads, the local literacy advocacy foundation, unveiled its new Literacy Van on Monday, fitting in front of the Public Library. In a cooperative effort between the Library and the Monrovia Unified School District, the brightly colored van will be used to augment the after school village program at the elementary schools.
Van will also have WiFi capability that will allow students to check out and return library books from the van when it visits the after school programs.
Karen Sutherland, the President of Monrovia Reads thanked the two major sponsored both of whom had made large donations to support the van’s conversion from a retired Monrovia Transit vehicle to a refurbished and renovated tool to promote reading in the community.
The levels of sponsorship were given labels with a literary flair. The Publisher Sponsor is Foothill Credit Union, and the Author sponsor is the Greater Los Angeles New Car.
Sutherland also thanked the Monrovia Public Library Foundation for its generosity in supplying a grant that enabled Monrovia Reads to outfit the van, and purchase the necessary book shelves and other furnishings.
Since the future use of the van will involve both city staff members and the schools, Mayor Tom Adams and Board of Education President Terrence Williams also spoke to the small crowd that had gathered to celebrate the new vehicle. The President of the Monrovia Library Foundation, former Mayor Mary Ann Lutz, also addressed the crowd.
Williams pointed out that the van “will bring the Library closer to the community, Lutz expanded on that theme saying “This will take the Library outside its four walls.”
Monrovia Reads is a registered 501(c) 3 Charity. It was founded more than 20 years ago with a stated goal of making Monrovia a 100% literate community. To that end, the group supports book giveaways to children, the Pro Active Tutoring program, as well as supplying teachers with class sets of books and other reading related activities.