10th Anniversary ‘Stand Out’ Library – Harkins House

Mindy Chipps, Juvenile Counselor at Harkins House and David Leiber, Judith’s Reading Room Board member show off the Judith’s Reading Room library at Harkins House.

To celebrate its 10th Anniversary, Judith’s Reading Room, a global literacy non-profit organization founded in 2010 kept good on its promise to bolster libraries it has donated over its 10 year history. 

 To celebrate the milestone, the board of directors allocated $5,000 to be invested in 10 of its 99 literacy initiatives.   Portland, Oregon’s Harkins House is named one of the ten “stand out” libraries.  Led by board member David Leiber, 39 books worth $637 – all picked by the kids themselves — were delivered to Harkins House on March 13.
Since 2012, Judith’s Reading Room has collaborated with educators  and counselors at Harkins House, a nationally recognized shelter for delinquent youth near Portland, Oregon, and has delivered nearly 600 books for leisure reading and book clubs.

The idea is to instill in this unique population a love of reading.  Why? Literacy is a significant protective factor for at-risk youth and is strongly correlated with reducing recidivism, according to Mindy Chipps, Juvenile Counselor.   Harkins House serves over 100 youth per year.  Last year the number totaled 122 with 80% returning to their community.  She added, “Literacy is supported by everyone at Harkins House because books help kids returning to school by dropping barriers, heightening interest, and fostering the love of favorite topics.”

Chipps added that youth residing at Harkins House have the opportunity to actually read a book, unencumbered by stresses and strains from their often untenable home environments.  Most stay 60 days and in that time, many come to see reading a book as a way to escape painful environments.  

Shopping at Barnes & Noble for books for the donation to Harkins House in Portland, Oregon.  David Leiber received book wish list from Harkins House and successfully found most of their request.

Letter and more photo’s of delivered books!
(Updated April 18, 2020)


I hope this finds you and yours safe and healthy.  We are living in such a different world right now.

I included the approved pictures from your visit.  I read the press release from your visit, it is great! All of our youth have been enjoying the books you donated and have been sharing their awesome summaries of the books, it is wonderful to see.

Look forward to our continued partnership!

Mindy Chipps
Juvenile Counselor
Harkins House

Books Donated to Harkins House, Portland, Oregon March 13, 2020
Angelou, M., I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings
Backman, F., A Man Called Ove
Backman, F., Bear Town
Beattie, M., Codependent No More
Brown, C., A Piece of Cake
Buxbaum, J., Tell Me Three Things
Clinton, H., The Book of Gutsy Women
Dasher, J., The Maze Runner Series
       Book 1: The Maze Runner
       Book 2: The Scortch Trials
       Book 4: The Kill Order
De La Pena, M., Mexican White Boy
Emmich, V., Dear Evan Hansen
Frank, A., Anne Frank’s Diary, The Graphic Adaptation
Glasgow, K., Girl in Pieces
Han, J., To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before
Hollis, D., Get Out of Your Own Way
Jackson, H., A Good Girl’s Guide to Murder
Kamkwamba, W., The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind
Liggett, K., The Grace Year
Lucado, M., Anxious for Nothing
McManus, K., One of Us is Lying
McManus, K., One of Us is Next
Morris, H., The Tattooist of Auschwitz
Niven, J. All the Bright Places
O’Brien, T., The Things They Carried
Reynolds, J., Long Way Down
Ribay, R., Patron Saints of Nothing
Rodriguez, L., Always Running
Salazar, N., The Flight Girls
Sanchez, R., Once a King, Always a King
Sanchez, R., My Bloody Life
Stevenson, B., Just Mercy
Stone, N., Dear Martin
Takei, G., They Called Us Enemy
Thomas, A., On the Come Up
Venkatesh, S., Gang Leader for a Day
Watson, R., Watch Us Rise
Yoon, N., Every Thing, Every Thing
Yousafzai, M., I am Malala

 The 10 Judith’s Reading Room ‘Stand Out’ libraries are:

“By supporting the good work of others, we aspire to share and celebrate people who are doing genuinely astonishing work, instilling in others a love of reading,” said Scott Leiber, Co-Founder of Judith’s Reading Room.

In addition to libraries, Judith’s Reading Room holds an annual competition for the “Freedom Through Literacy Award.”  Initiated in 2015, Judith’s Reading Room has disbursed $33,500 in prize money, honoring 31 individual champions of literacy in the United States, the Philippines, Bhutan, Pakistan, Rwanda, Cambodia, Mexico, Australia, Zimbabwe and Greece.

Applications for the 2020 Freedom Through Literacy Award may be found at www.judithsreadingroom.org/freedom-through-literacy-award/.  Deadline is July 1st.  Winners announced end of July. 

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