Since the summer of 2022, The Imagine Society has decided to focus on “Equity in Education,” highlighting different ways our Youth Leaders can help young students in need get access to books, necessary supplies, technology, and community encouragement. Now you can join us in Chapter 2 of our ongoing service project #ANewChapter. In our March Imagine Newsletter, we introduced you to the library at Green Hill School in Chehalis, Washington. Green Hill is a maximum security fenced facility for young men sentenced to Juvenile Rehabilitation. Their incredible librarian Julie Forbes is on an inspiring mission to support the dreams and aspirations of these young men, and to provide for them a world-class library where they can grow and thrive. Every day the students at Green Hill request books they would like to read, books that help inspire their future selves: that take them through their journeys of education, career, adulthood, parenting. Our Youth Leaders have decided to help fulfill the Green Hill Library’s book wishlist.
Our Imagine Youth have created and designed bespoke bookmarks that helped us raise $2000 with which we directly purchased and shipped brand new books to the students and the library at the Green Hill Juvenile Detention Center. Please consider continuing sponsorship of this important, ongoing mission Green Hill Library’s book wishlist.
Check out our gallery of some of the original bookmarks featured on @TheImagineSociety Instagram page where our youth raised $2000 to #clearthelist in August 2022.
GREEN HILL is a medium/maximum security fenced facility that provides older males sentenced to Juvenile Rehabilitation treatment with education and vocational training. Educational options include high school diploma, general equivalency diploma (GED), and college coursework. Vocational programs include computer technology, light machine fabrication, vehicle maintenance, landscaping, welding, and the Juvenile Vocational Industries Program or “JVIP”. Green Hill School provides Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT), Aggression Replacement Training (ART), cultural programming, sex offense-specific treatment, and intensive outpatient chemical dependency treatment. Other unique programs include peer-to-peer mentoring, credible messengers (mentoring), and Gateways through Evergreen State College.
The Imagine Society has successfully raised $2,000 to put towards the service project A New Chapter to provide library carts and books to the teens in secure juvenile detention facilities Horizon in the Bronx and Crossroads in Brooklyn! These carts and books will be part of the mobile library and book club that will enrich and enhance the lives of teens just like us who have found themselves in a difficult situation. Aside from the obvious positive effects of reading to enhance vocabulary, imagination and academics, research has also shown that reading can impact your sense of empathy, social skills and self esteem. Reading can literally change your mind during the continuous development of the brain until age 25.
Thank you to Project Cicero a not-for-profit organization whose primary goal is to enhance classroom and school libraries in under-resourced New York City public schools. They generously donated 155 gently used books from their book drive to The Imagine Society for us to deliver together with our mobile book carts to Horizon in the Bronx and Crossroads in Brooklyn.
Star members of Warriors Youth NYC together with the amazing mom & teacher Evie Polesny, our liaison with the juvenile detention centers– who brought this need to our attention and inspired our teens to start “A New Chapter” (thank you Nellie Fitzpatrick, age 15, for the perfect name for this initiative)! One of our Imagine Teen Leaders Margot donated 25 books from her personal library and custom made vintage library card inserts for each book to make them even more special for the teens who receive them!
The Warriors assembled two industrial sized book carts to make it easy to wheel the books around the centers and place them in different rooms. Foster Schrader, age 17, our Imagine Teen leader and Youth Ambassador for Project Cicero, sorted the books to remove the hardcovers (per requirements of the centers) and organized the donation. She met up with Warrior Joseph Fitzpatrick, age 17, to hand off the books that filled the whole back of the car!
The books were then transported to the in person Warriors meeting where the books were photographed and sent to the other Warrior members at home in quarantine who inventoried each book.
Imagine volunteer Nora Fitzpatrick and Evie then made the first epic delivery of books to Horizon and Crossroads! During this pandemic everything is a little harder to pull off, but we will never let that stop us from our mission to help each other. Almost 200 books have been donated so far and we’re already preparing for our next delivery!