RIF and RJ & Heidi Narang

Virginia couple make a big difference for children in four local schools

Date: June 2019

Location: Northern Virginia

RJ and Heidi Narang helped students prepare for summer reading by funding Books for Ownership celebrations in their local community. Nearly 1,200 K-2nd graders across four different schools in the Northern Virginia area got the opportunity to participate and receive over 3,000 books to take home and own! Not only did the Narangs make it possible to distribute these books, they also generously donated some of their time by attending book celebrations, reading to the students, and helping them select their books. Each school also featured its own unique theme. One school turned their library into a mini camp site, and had the students sit around a fake campfire while Heidi Narang read Goodnight Campsite to them.

Lessons Learned

  • Individuals and families can fund Books for Ownership and support literacy in their local community. Even supporting this program at one school or in one classroom makes a huge impact.
  • Adding a theme to a Books for Ownership event not only adds extra engagement, but can be done easily with a little creativity. In addition to the library’s homemade campfire, they also projected a forest backdrop and played cricket sounds.
  • Books for Ownership events can be done as large assemblies or broken out into individual classrooms. These events took place in the school libraries during each class’ library time. There was no need to find extra time in the day; they must maximized the already scheduled time in the library.