An Oakboro Choice STEM alumnus has taken her love of reading to a new level as she recently built a free library at the school for the public.
Anya Bullock, an Oakboro Choice graduate last school year, noticed that during the COVID-19 pandemic, many students did not necessarily have books to read at home, especially when schools and libraries did not. were not open.
After talking to the teachers at the school and doing her own research, Bullock learned that, unlike herself, many other students do not have a regular supply of books at home that they can read and enjoy. .
“Not everyone has equal access to reading books,” said Bullock, 14, who is now a freshman at Stanly Early College.
Bullock wanted to convey his love for books to other members of the community, especially students.
She quickly heard about Little Free Lending Library, a nonprofit organization that has helped expand access to books through a network of Little Free Libraries run by volunteers.
The free library stand-alone model seemed perfectly suited to the school. Bullock therefore decided at the start of the summer to build a library at Oakboro Choice for the benefit of both students and the surrounding community.
She planned her design and pitched her idea to Principal Kelly Dombrowski. Once given the green light, Bullock then sought out and organized donations for materials and books, and partnered with many people to build and set up the library.
Brian and Sandy Brown of Brown’s Woodworking in Albemarle donated the wood for the library and Oakboro residents Mary Doyle and Courtney Davenport donated the vinyl for the door.
Bullock’s uncle Austin Whitley helped with the construction while Mike Shipman from Columbia, South Carolina helped Bullock paint the box.
It took several months, but the library was officially installed on September 19 along the school’s side yard. The bookcase is painted blue and white and has the school logo with the eagle stuck to the front, along with the words “Take a book” and “Share a book”.
Bullock also created a brochure, which is included in the library, to help others see the need for literacy in the community. The goal, she said, is for everyone to be able to borrow the books to read, not just the students at school.
Through her efforts to build the library, Bullock was also able to win the Silver Award, the highest award a Cadet Scout can earn. Bullock is now a senior scout in the Albemarle 1708 troop.
Bullock should soon receive its charter number which officially registers the library with littlefreelibrary.org. There are currently 10 other such libraries in Stanly County.
As part of its project, Bullock will continue to oversee and maintain the library.