The program has been running in Prince Albert for a year and to date 400 children have registered. Hjertaas confirmed that they have good community support, but the additional funds are insufficient.
“Everyone is, I think, overwhelmed by the pandemic and unable to support as generously as they would like, so we want to make sure we can keep the program going,” she said.
The cost of running the program each month is around $1,300. While administrative costs are covered by the national association, the local affiliate is responsible for paying for the books, which cost $3.50 per book and there are approximately 350 active children. Hjertaas commented that they had a great response.
“Some people send us photos, others comment that they like the books,” she said.
For those interested in volunteering, the best option is to message Hjertaas directly, and his contact details are available on the program’s Facebook group page.
“The biggest thing we need right now is that we need help fundraising, but we have bigger events happening in the future and we will definitely need a lot of hands on the bridge to shake things up,” she said.
Dr. Java recently launched a new website to help local community groups raise funds. Other groups that have benefited include the Waskesiu and St. Louis Fire Departments, as well as the Community Alcohol Strategy and Mothers Against Drunk Driving.
On Twitter: @nigelmaxwell