Atlanta News First launches annual Books to Kids campaign in metro Atlanta schools

Since ANF started the program in 2018 the station has distributed more than 75,000 books.
Students from McLendon Elementary School are getting brand new books to read!
Published: Sep. 28, 2023 at 8:44 AM EDT|Updated: Sep. 28, 2023 at 8:45 AM EDT
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ATLANTA, Ga. (Atlanta News First) - Some metro Atlanta elementary school students are on the receiving end of brand-new books to read. Atlanta News First launched its annual Books to Kids initiative Thursday at McLendon Elementary School in Decatur.

Since ANF started the program in 2018, the station has distributed more than 75,000 books to more than 15,000 children throughout metro Atlanta.

During Thursday’s 2023 Books to Kids launch, each student received a backpack filled with five books and other goodies. In total, Atlanta News First gave out 1,575 books at McLendon Elementary.

Students also had the opportunity to participate in story time with ANF anchors, reporters, and meteorologists as they read books to the students and answered questions.

McLendon Elementary School Principal Raft Ingram says initiatives like Books to Kids will help improve Georgia’s literacy rate.

“Reading will propel you in so many different ways,” said Ingram. “Reading is so fundamental because it connects you to all other different facets of learning.”

Statistics show that if kids are not reading proficiently by third grade, they most likely will never catch up. Third grade is when children make the shift from learning to read to reading to learn.

“We just want to be a part of it, provide the resources, the books, the encouragement to help these guys reach their full potential and be successful,” said Mark Mines, of McDonald’s, a sponsor of this year’s Books to Kids.

Atlanta News First partners with several organizations and businesses throughout the metro to make this initiative possible, including - Ken Nugent – attorneys at law, Troncalli Subaru and Subaru of Kennesaw, Delta Community Credit Union, McDonald’s, Page Turners Make Great Learners, Two Men and a Truck, Georgia State University, and the Georgia Department of Education.

Atlanta News First plans to visit a variety of other schools in the coming weeks to give out more Books to Kids.