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Press Release Fun: SCBWI Books for Readers Book Drive


SCBWI’s 2nd Annual Literacy Initiative Gives Books and Builds Dreams

With Donations of Books to Readers In Need

Children’s Book Creators Join Forces to Provide High Quality Books for the Indian Education Program of Fargo and West Fargo Public Schools


Los Angeles, CA, and Fargo, North Dakota—September 19, 2018

Members of the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators join forces again as part of the organization’s 2nd Annual SCBWI Books For Readers book drive to collect, curate, and donate new books created by its members to one of its two 2018 recipients: the Indian Education Program of the Fargo and West Fargo Public Schools. (The other is the Literacy Alliance in Oviedo, FL.)

The SCBWI Books for Readers book drive is the organization’s annual literacy initiative that grew out of the desire to combine its individual regional efforts to make a greater impact in increasing book access nationwide.

“In the U.S., many low-income and underserved communities have as few as 1 book per 300 children,” said Lin Oliver, Executive Director of SCBWI, “Our members are committed to changing this by advancing our organization’s mission as children’s book creators and literacy advocates, and to increase access to books for kids in need…one book donation at a time!”

SCBWI’s donation of nearly1.000 member’s books will go to the Indian Education Program of the Fargo and West Fargo Public Schools in Fargo, North Dakota. Acting as advocates for school success for its Native American students from over 30 area tribes, the program provides cultural opportunities and connections for both students and families.

The donation of books will take place on the Fargo and West Fargo Public Schools’ Indigenous Peoples’ Day, October 8th during its Pow Wow at 6:30 p.m.

“We are thrilled to receive this generous donation of books. Many of our families do not have the luxury of having books in their homes,” said Melody Staebner, the Fargo and West Fargo Public Schools’ Indian Education Coordinator and an enrolled member in the Turtle Mountain Band of Chippewa.

“With this donation during our Indigenous Peoples’ Day, we can reinforce the importance of reading at school and at home!”

Staebner is especially pleased about the donation’s variety of genres and age groups to help their students read to succeed.

“We know that if kids are excited about reading, and are competent readers by the third grade,” Staebner continued, “they will have a better chance of graduating high school—one of our program’s goals, as well as following their dreams!”

“Dreams” seem to be the guiding theme for the literacy initiative, the book donation recipients–and the books’ creators donating the books.

“Getting books into children’s hands is why we create books—to help build dreams,” said Oliver, “And, getting our books into hands of readers in need…is a dream come true!”


For more information, please contact:

Tammy Brown

Director, Community Marketing and Engagement, SCBWI

PH: (323) 782-1010


Patricia J. Murphy

Children’s Author

Literacy Initiative Creative Consultant, SCBWI

PH: (847) 917-4963


Melody Staebner 

Fargo and West Fargo Public Schools’

Indian Education Coordinator

An Enrolled Member in the Turtle Mountain Band of Chippewa.
PH: 701-446-3054


Venue Location:

Agassiz Building

1305 9th Avenue South

Fargo, ND 58104


About Society of Children’s Writers and Illustrators

Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators is a non-profit, 501(c)3 organization, which is one of the largest existing organizations for writers and illustrators. It is the only professional organization specifically for those individuals writing and illustrating for children and young adults in the fields of children’s literature, magazines, film, television and multimedia. The SCBWI acts as a network for the exchange of knowledge between writers, illustrators, editors, publishers, agents, librarians, educators, booksellers and others involved with literature for young people.


About the Indian Education Program

The Indian Education Program of Fargo and West Fargo Public Schools advocates for Native American students’ school success while providing cultural opportunity connections for students and families. Its primary goals are to increase graduation rates, school attendance, and knowledge of cultural identity and awareness. For more information, visit:

About Elizabeth Bird

Elizabeth Bird is currently the Collection Development Manager of the Evanston Public Library system and a former Materials Specialist for New York Public Library. She has served on Newbery, written for Horn Book, and has done other lovely little things that she'd love to tell you about but that she's sure you'd find more interesting to hear of in person. Her opinions are her own and do not reflect those of EPL, SLJ, or any of the other acronyms you might be able to name. Follow her on Twitter: @fuseeight.