It’s never too early to start collecting a library of books for a child so they can begin to develop an appreciation and love for reading. Charlotte Hungerford Hospital (CHH) and its Auxiliary are helping in this effort by participating in the “Read to Grow” Program, which offers newborns and their siblings a book at birth and two additional books in their first year.
The CHH Auxiliary provides financial support for the program in addition to grant funding provided by Read to Grow, and its volunteers have delivered the most books to babies out of the 12 participating Connecticut hospitals. Five CHH volunteers including Dalia Acevedo, Helen Alling, Julie Morris, Rosalie Strano, and Pat Zimmerman have all been trained through Read to Grow and present the books and program information to our families. There are close to 400 babies born at CHH every year.
“We are so pleased to participate in the Books for Babies program at Charlotte and provide these wonderful resources for families. It has been a great success and stresses the value of reading to children at a very early age.” says Cath Pezze, President of the CHH Auxiliary.
Read to Grow is a nonprofit organization dedicated to improving early literacy for children. It was founded in 2000 and is currently operating a “Books for Babies” is now in 12 hospitals for families with newborns and in community health centers for pregnant women. It also operates a “Books for Kids” childhood literacy continuum, giving books directly to children and to many who work with and serve children. It is also in formal collaborations with more than three dozen nonprofits to get books and services directly to families in need.
Since its inception, Read to Grow has had a tremendous impact and growth in Connecticut. Over 1.4 million books have been donated, 900,000 children have been given books, 13 partnerships with nonprofits and over 280,000 newborn literacy packets given.
The CHH Maternity Center offers one-to-one expert maternity care in a personalized, family-friendly setting for women throughout Northwestern Connecticut. Services include care during labor and delivery, single-room maternity care, advanced technology, “rooming-in” for moms and their babies, a highly trained and caring staff, inviting and comfortable rooms, special amenities for new parents, and education for new parents need from labor and delivery classes to birthing plans. For more information on Maternity Services, call 860-496-6395.
(LtoR) CHH Auxiliary volunteers Rosalie Strano, Helen Alling, Patricia Zimmerman, and Julie Morris, share “Books For Babies” with CHH Clinical Manager of CHH Maternity Services Kelli Odenwaelder, RN, which they distribute to newborns and their families monthly.