By Jurry Taalib-Deen
Journal Staff Writer
“I don’t let me kids read from the internet, unless it's school related. I want them reading from an actual book,” Maryah McIntosh told The Toledo Journal on Wednesday, July 25.
Ms. McIntosh was one of many parents, who attended Books 4 Buddies event, held at the Weiler Homes, on Toledo’s east side. Throughout the year, the organization hosts similar events around Toledo. The object is to encourage literacy through reading actual books. The event was a collaboration between Toledo Public Schools (TPS) and Lucas County Metropolitan Housing (LMHA).
In addition to giving away books, free food, face painting, games, and a boxing lesson made up the day’s agenda.
Mondo Arce, 17, is the spokesperson, as well as an Ambassador for Books 4 Buddies.
“Events like this are so important,” he said. “When you read from a book, instead of your phone, you avoid distractions like texts messages, social media updates, etc. Although books may be considered old fashion, they still work. And it’s important that kids have role models encouraging, and showing them the importance of reading a book,” Mondo said.
Jordan Topoleski, 18, is also an Ambassador for Books 4 Buddies. He said that, many people may not have the resources to buy and keep books in their homes; therefore, their effort helps fill a much needed void.
“Over the years since I’ve been in the program, I’ve got a better perspective on the entire city, and not just where I live,” he said.
Joaquin Centron Vega is vice president of assets management for LMHA. He said, “We like to take pride in our community by helping to provide positive things for it, especially for the children.”
“This event encourages kids to read during the summer months,” said Dr. Romules Durant, superintendent for TPS. “We’re always looking for ways to encourage literacy,” he said.