Local Champions of Literacy Dominate This Year’s Awards
July 30, 2018 — Lehigh Valley, Pa. — Judith’s Reading Room proudly announces this year’s Top Prize winner of its Freedom Through Literacy Award is the Macungie, Pa Willow Lane Elementary teaching duo Julia Dweck and Matthew Weimann. The goal of their project, “Release Your Fireflies,” is to creatively equip children to navigate a complex world through storytelling, paving the way for an appreciation of and lifetime membership in the universal library of human literature. Top Prize award is $3,000.
Carin Mileshosky, Library Director, Fleetwood Area Public Library, Fleetwood, Pa (a Pa Library Association Gold Star Library) is awarded the organization’s Judith’s Award in the amount of $500. The Judith’s Award, a new prize category this year, is designed exclusively for teachers, librarians or authors. Carin’s integrated and fun-filled program, “FleetwoodSUMMER 2018,” attracted 180 individuals to attend creative programs; 150 of whom committed to reading over the summer, thereby reducing the negative impact of so-called “summer slide.”
The Board Option Award with a total prize of $1,000 is shared amongst four visionary individuals. Christopher Dew for his boy scout Eagle Project, “Mini-Library for Lehigh Valley H.O.P.E.” is awarded $300; Ana Luhrs, Lafayette College’s Skillman Librarian for “The Leadership Center Library in Zambrano, Honduras” is awarded $300; Cheryl Stoner-Gutshall, Dover Area School District, for her project, “Outdoor Education Book Creator” is awarded $200; and, Marsha Townsend for her nonprofit, “Bringing Up a Bookworm” is awarded $200.
A celebratory award dinner will be held in their honor on Wednesday, September 12 at 6 p.m. at MELT, located at The Promenade Mall, 2880 Center Valley Parkway, Center Valley, Pa. The public is encouraged to attend the dinner. To reserve your space, a check made payable to Judith’s Reading Room in the amount of $45 per person must be mailed to P.O. Box 164, Blandon, PA 19510 and received no later than Wednesday, August 29.
Judith’s Reading Room, a literacy 501 (c) 3 based in eastern Pa was founded in 2010 in memory of Judith Krug, first cousin to the founders. The mission of Judith’s Reading Room is to enrich lives and societies by proactively encouraging freedom through literacy. To date, the organization has fulfilled that mission by dedicating 96 libraries in 19 countries (and counting), with over 127,000 books donated and valued at nearly $1.4 million dollars.
Since 2015, The Freedom Through Literacy Award has disbursed (including 2018 winners) $29,000 and has honored 25 individual champions of literacy in the United States, the Philippines, Bhutan, Pakistan, Rwanda, Cambodia and Mexico.
Visit our Freedom Through Literacy Award Page