San Gabriel teens hold book drive to help local hospital

With the goal of 200 books, the San Gabriel Library teen advisory board is hoping to make a positive contribution to Children’s Hospital Los Angeles – but they need your help.

“We’re asking people to bring brand new children’s books to the library to donate to Children’s Hospital Los Angeles,” noted Fiona Reimers, an adult/teen librarian for the San Gabriel Library. “We want to fill two large bins with 200 new books, and we think it’s possible with the support of the community.”

While the choice of a book drive may be the obvious choice for a library club, members of the teen advisory board wanted to support a larger goal to help inspire dreams and imagination in young children. “The book drive is not simply just helping kids,” Serena Ta, a member of the teen advisory board, said. “Giving a book to a child is giving the possibility of a whole new world.”

The book drive – which runs from November 18 to December 2 – originally came to fruition as an idea from one teen who expressed a desire to get involved with helping a local children’s hospital. “We took the idea to a vote, and the teens decided to get behind the idea to start a book drive,” Reimers said. After a brief discussion, Reimers gave the teens the freedom to plan their own event. “The group is made up of boys and girls from eighth grade to twelfth grade, and this was really their opportunity to create and host something on their own.”

To launch the campaign, the teen advisory board will be holding a fun kickoff on November 18 from 2:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. at the library, with food, karaoke, balloon artists, games and more. Members of the public are invited to help celebrate the book drive’s launch, by bringing children’s books or simply just spreading the word with local residents. “We’re not requiring anyone to bring a book that day, but it is encouraged,” Reimers said.

For those unable to attend the kickoff, they may also come to the library during the book drive to donate new children’s books during the campaign. “The hospital cannot accept anything that is old or used because they don’t want to subject sick children to any germs, so new books are appreciated,” Reimers said.

As for the event itself, this is the first time the teen advisory board has ever conducted any form of outreach. “This type of event has not been done before at the library, which is why we think it’s special,” Reimers said. “I think this will be a great way to show support for the children in our community,” Myat Lwin – another member of the teen advisory board – noted.

To help support the teens and their 200-book goal, residents are encouraged to bring new children’s books to the library from November 18 to December 2. The library’s teen advisory board will also be holding a special kick-off on November 18 from 2:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m., with games, food and more.