Vikas is a staff writer for the Sustainable Development news and editorial section on Justmeans. He is an MBA with 20 years of managerial and entrepreneurial experience and global travel. He is the author of "The Power of Money" (Scholars, 2003), a book that presents a revolutionary monetary economic theory on poverty alleviation in the developing world. Vikas is also the official writer...
New Children's Library in Memphis Sponsored by Hilton
Homewood Suites by Hilton has opened a new children's library in Memphis, TN. The library will provide more than two hundred at-risk preschoolers with access to books, reading programs and other educational tools that support early literacy skills. The global hospitality brand is joined in the project by The Books for Kids Foundnation, an early childhood education nonprofit.
Bill Duncan, global head of brand management for Homewood Suites by Hilton said: "Sadly, in Memphis only 43.9 percent of third-graders scored 'proficient or above' in reading in 2011. Opening our second library in Memphis in collaboration with Books for Kids shines the spotlight on the critical issue of childhood literacy and the great need for education resources among those who have the least."
The Hanley Head Start Center, where the library is housed, received support from the teams at the Homewood Suites and Books for Kids to renovate a space that previously served as a storage room. Team members from the Suites' corporate headquarters and three properties in Memphis area worked for several weeks to prepare the space, assemble shelves, organize new books, and give finishing touches to the library.
The Hanley Head Start Center focuses on serving at-risk preschoolers, almost all of whom are classified as below the federal poverty guidelines. Over the last 25 years, the Head Start program has expanded to serve a diverse community of about 200 students from the immediate neighborhood.
Duncan says: "We are hopeful that our Memphis Books for Kids libraries will help the Tennessee Department of Education reach their goal of ensuring 60 percent of all Tennessee third-graders read at a proficient level or above by 2014. The Homewood Suites family is proud to be making an impact in our Memphis community and other cities across the country, providing much-needed resources to at-risk children and their families."
The latest Books for Kids library in Memphis is the fifth in a series of libraries that Homewood Suites plans to open over the next several years. Every new library opens a window of educational opportunity for hundreds of children and gives them access to resources that were previously unavailable, furthering Homewood Suites' goal to impact local communities where its properties are located.