Book Drive aims to help children in need

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PHOENIX - Bank of Arizona is teaming with a national anti-bullying effort called Rachel’s Challenge during the month of July. 

In an effort that shows you really shouldn’t judge a book by its cover.

3TV partnered with Rachel’s Challenge earlier this year to help bring its programs to Arizona schools. The program is championed by the father of the first shooting victim at Columbine High School Rachel Scott.  The idea is create chain reaction through random acts of kindness.
Now it seems, Rachel's Challenge is spreading beyond just our schools and taking a deeper root in our community.

"We know that Rachel Joy Scott had a love for reading and in her chain reaction of kindness,” said Jacki Grainger, Community Relations Director for Bank of Arizona. “We're taking books that someone isn't reading anymore and they're passing them on and creating that chain reaction."

The bank is sponsoring a book drive as their way to pay it forward and fill a great need in our community.

“Fifteen percent of people can't read even a newspaper article of fill out a basic job application,” Grainger adds. 

The books will be donated to the Saint Vincent de Paul centers, where volunteers and others will use them in special projects and to help spread a love for reading. For many it’s about creating that passion that will last a lifetime.

"They start to look at the pictures and then they start to hear the story and then they start to get involved with it the way I do and you can tell it's a way for them to sort of escape into a different world, which is what I think is what reading is all about," said Anita Hughes, a Bank of Arizona volunteer. “I want to help the kids be able to grow up with books, with the technology today there isn't a whole lot of reading that goes on with hard core books."

Specifically, organizers are asking for children’s books, adult books, magazines and even cookbooks. And Grainger adds, there’s a growing need for books in Spanish.

During last year’s efforts, the bank received 5,000 book donations.  This year, they’ve tripled their goal, hoping to receive 15,000.

You can donate through July 12 at any Bank of Arizona branch for more information go to: http://www.azfamily.com/community/RachelsChallengeBookDrive-123844719.html