Little Free Library built from tornado-damaged trees
PLATTEVILLE, Wis. — The University of Wisconsin-Platteville Children’s Center, the Hidden Valley Reading Council, and many others recently contributed to placing a Little Free Library near the Children’s Center. The library is constructed from trees that were damaged during the tornado that struck campus in June 2014.
There are over 32,000 Little Free Library book exchanges around the world, bringing curbside literacy home and sharing over 1 million books annually. The purpose of the libraries is to promote literacy and the love of reading by building a sense of community across generations.
The process began when the Hidden Valley Reading Council, a local chapter of the Wisconsin State Reading Association, decided to bring one to the Platteville area as the group’s service project in the spring of 2013. The university community was impacted by the loss of many trees on campus and Leon Neuheisel offered to use the wood to build a Little Free Library.
“The first library was placed in Katie’s Garden in May, 2013. Since then, the group has sponsored seven Little Free Libraries in Platteville, with the most recent library being placed in front of the Children’s Center at UW-Platteville in September 2015,” said Dr. Lindsay Hollingsworth, assistant professor of education and president of the Hidden Valley Reading Council. Hollingsworth assisted in writing grants to solicit funding from the Platteville Community Fund and Wisconsin State Reading Association.
Julie Soja, director of the Children’s Center, was asked if she would be interested in having a Little Free Library at the center and believed it was heartfelt and beneficial to the children “I see children really getting excited to choose a book from home to exchange for one in the Little Free Library,” she said. “It’s a great way for them to connect with the community.”
For more information on the Little Free Libraries and where to find one close by, go to http://littlefreelibrary.org/.
Written by: Sydney Bend, UW-Platteville University Information and Communications, 608-342-1194, firstname.lastname@example.org