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Readers are Leaders

Giving Back

On April 11 at 7:00 am, five Panorama folks attended the annual breakfast for the South Sound Reading Foundation. The early risers were Sue Ballard, Kathy and David Forsythe, Matt Murry and Meghan Vu. The goal is to bridge the gap between schools and libraries. The majority of the funds raised by the foundation go to buy books for kids – starting at birth. Also in attendance were political, civic and school leaders. The motto for the Foundation is a good reminder for everyone to “Read 20 minutes a day.”

The keynote speaker was Claudia Castro Luna, who is the current Washington State Poet Laureate. She was born in El Salvador and came to the United States in 1981. She read to us from her memoir, The Heart Knows When, which is about her experiences escaping the civil war. She told about leaving for the airport to come to the United States and they all prayed they would make it to the airport without being killed by rebels on their trip. Her story made everyone appreciate how safe we feel in our life in Lacey.

As a former teacher and the daughter of a librarian, I believe reading is such an important skill for everyone. I love this breakfast because it reinforces my basic beliefs about the magic of reading. I learned studies have shown people have a better memory of the content of a book if they read it in hard copy, as opposed to an electronic version. I also love going to this event because it gives me an opportunity to connect with people I know from the community. All in all, I enjoy this program and going to a 7:00 am breakfast is well worth the challenge of getting up early.

Sue Ballard, Panorama resident