The Barnes & Noble Bookstore on the Country Club Plaza has named Swope Health Services as the recipient of its annual Holiday Book Drive.
This is the third time in four years Barnes & Noble has selected SHS to receive books donated by its customers.
All customers who visit the Plaza Barnes & Noble store, 420 W. 47th St., Kansas City, MO, through Dec. 9, 2018, are invited to purchase books for SHS children’s programs.
SHS will provide the books free to children of all ages who visit SHS clinics for healthcare and behavioral health services.
“In the past, we have worked with Swope Health and it’s been a great success,” said Joseph Harris, assistant store manager at the Plaza Barnes & Noble.
“We’ve had a lot of engagement from the community. We get really excited because it’s such a great cause. We’re happy to partner with Swope Health.’’
The book drive launched at the end of October and will wrap up at the end of the first week in December. Joseph said the drive is on pace to produce more than 1,000 books.
“This is a wonderful program that provides books for our kids here at Swope Health throughout the year,” said Amy Kuhnlein, SHS Manager of Development and Community Affairs. “Books are used in treatments and as rewards for reaching milestones. Barnes & Noble helps us make KC a community of healthy readers.”
Customers can choose their own childhood favorites or select from SHS- or Barnes & Noble-recommended titles.
Barnes & Noble keeps a supply of recommended books at every checkout counter, making it easy for customers to select a book for the drive at checkout.
The SHS list was developed by professional therapists and counselors in the Children’s Community Psychiatric Rehabilitation Program, which works with children from ages 5-17 who experience trauma or behavioral health issues.
The reading list includes books featuring characters in similar situations and provides stimulus to work through challenges.
“Reading is magic,” said Tiffany Clinton, Supervisor, Children’s Community Psychiatric Rehabilitation Program at SHS.
“The kids can disappear into a story, into a new world, and sometimes it becomes a little easier to talk about the difficult stuff. These books offer hope and life lessons.”
Barnes & Noble, a national chain, encourages book drives at all of its local shops. In its 2017 book drive, Barnes & Noble helped deliver more than 1.6 million books to more than 650 local charitable organizations serving disadvantaged children across the country.
The Plaza Barnes & Noble has donated books from its Holiday Book Drive to SHS in previous years, providing SHS more than 1,500 books in 2015 and again in 2017. SHS volunteers will also help wrap presents at the store throughout December.
“We love our partnership with Barnes &Noble,” Amy said, adding SHS will distribute the books through its children’s programs and pediatric health care clinics.
SHS healthcare providers also use the books to help assess a child’s cognitive and physical development and talk with parents about the importance of reading to their children.
Research has shown that reading to young children produces benefits including increasing vocabulary, curiosity and memory and improving listening skills. The American Academy of Family Physicians describes a positive association with books and reading as a foundation for scholastic success.
You can support the book drive by visiting the Barnes & Noble on the Country Club Plaza, 420 W. 47th St. The store is open Sundays from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. and Monday through Saturday from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. On Dec. 24, the store is open from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. and closed on Dec. 25, Christmas Day. The store reopens from 8 a.m. to 9 p.m. on Dec. 26.