Maryland Book Bank turns book collection into gift due to coronavirus – CBS Baltimore


BALTIMORE (WJZ) – Thanks to the Maryland Book Bank, hundreds of children now have a new selection of books to read while stuck at home during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The organization turned what is normally its biggest book drive day of the year into a book giveaway.

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“What we did was we made it a distribution day because so many families are asking us for books right now,” said Mark Fiering of Maryland Book Bank.

Drawing inspiration from the restaurant industry, families could place an order for a bag of books. The group chose books based on the age of the child.

“Everything is contactless; we put it right in their trunk, ”Fiering said. “So it’s pretty easy for us to do and we were able to provide at least 10 pounds per child.

In total, they distribute books to over 400 children, including avid reader Gregory Areford.

“You take a book and it takes you somewhere else,” the 15-year-old said.

Thanks to the Maryland Book Bank, he now has 10 more books in his library.


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“It’s amazing,” Areford said. “I have no idea what I have. It was kind of like a random pick and I could find something I didn’t know I would like.

In a difficult time, books give children something else to do that is educational.

“Parents really need something that helps their kids feel better,” Fiering said. “They keep home schooling because they don’t have a choice, so they’re looking for something that works for them or something that keeps them engaged and keeps learning.”

And these parents certainly appreciate it

“It’s great, it gets really tough with the library closing because it reviews books like that,” said Tracy Lingo, a parent.

“Just to have an old-fashioned opportunity to have a book in hand, it’s really great,” added Cassandra Thomas, another parent.

Maryland Book Bank has said it is looking at the long term. They wish they could keep doing things like this for at least the next six months.

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For the latest information on the coronavirus, visit the Maryland Department of Health website or call 211. You can find all of WJZ’s coverage at coronavirus in Maryland here.


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