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The holiday spirit is upon us! The Eleventh Annual Cooper Reading Challenge, which was created to help instill the love of reading in children of the Boys & Girls Club of the West Valley, is under way. Last year, nearly 200 Boys & Girls Club children earned the privilege to select one or more books at a local bookstore, all funded through individual community donations.
Between now and December 1, children of the Club will read age-appropriate books and write a review in order to qualify for a trip to Barnes & Noble bookstore in Calabasas. At the bookstore, each child will have $25 to spend on one or more books for themselves or family members.
The Reading Challenge began 11 years ago in celebration of Cooper Communications’ twenty-fifth anniversary, when the company provided $25 for each of 25 Club youngsters to purchase books for themselves. The Reading Challenge has grown exponentially; over the past 11 years, nearly 2,000 Club kids have participated to date.
This year’s goal is to raise enough for 200 children to select their own books. “This program isn’t about fundraising; it’s about teaching children to love and value books and reading,” said Martin M. Cooper, President of Cooper Communications and the Club’s Chairman. “Books allow kids to see the world, and themselves, through different eyes. They have the power to change a child’s life. We invite the sponsors of this event to attend at least one book-shopping excursion to help the children select their books.”
To make a tax-deductible donation, checks should be made out to the Boys & Girls Club of the West Valley and sent to Martin Cooper, c/o Cooper Reading Challenge, 17547 Ventura Blvd., Suite 311, Encino, CA 91316. To donate online, go to http://wvbgc.org/donation-form.php, add amount to be contributed ($25/child), fill out your information and choose Cooper Reading Challenge from the dropdown menu under “My Donation is For.”