By Leah Sander
NORTH WEBSTER — Kosciusko Literacy Services knows books can help readers travel in their minds. They hope through an upcoming project people can physically travel and read at the same time.
The organization is planning its Books-A-Bound project. They hope to put 20 benches shaped like open books around the county. Each will be decorated corresponding to a particular book with a QR code on them.
People may scan the code and have access to a portion from the book depicted.
To complete the project, Literacy Services Executive Director Cynthia Cates said the group needs corporate and individual sponsors to cover the $30,000 cost. She’s already talked with Grace College about having its art students decorate the benches.
The project was planned pre-COVID-19, and she hopes to still get funding for it.
Aside from that project, Literacy Services is planning to restart its tutoring program. It should be at the Kosciusko County Community Foundation, with restrictions in place due to COVID-19 concerns. The group also plans to participate in another community read with the book “The Year We Left Home” by Jean Thompson as part of Indiana Humanities’ One State / One Story program.
That will most likely be moved to spring with the group hosting a special speaker related to the book and putting out copies of the book for county citizens to read.
Other activities the group leads are giving free books to children and helping adults learn to read.
Cates provided InkFreeNews with some recent county statistics. Nine percent of Kosciusko County residents are impoverished, which is often linked to illiteracy. Forty-three percent of adults reading at low levels also are low income. One in five adults are at the lowest literacy level.
To give to the Books-A-Bound project or make a donation in general, people may contact Literacy Services at (574)-529-5783.