Helping Communities Heal with the Gift of Reading
Many of us have strong memories of our favorite childhood book. One we read ravenously in the library corner, or one your mom or dad read just before you went to sleep. But for kids whose normal routine was dramatically interrupted by Hurricane Sandy six months ago, those memories and books may be harder to come by.
In celebration of the 40th Anniversary of FedEx, FedEx team members from around the world participated in a Global Month of Service in April. In New York and New Jersey, we’ve been engaged in a great deal of community service since Hurricane Sandy hit the East Coast almost six months ago, devastating communities across both states. In fact, local FedEx team members were among the first to mobilize in response to the hurricane’s aftermath. They managed FedEx deliveries of disaster-relief supplies and transport of electronic generators to power critical operations.
But just because the debris has been cleared and the state of emergency has long been lifted, for many, life still isn’t back to normal.
And one group that takes that lack of normalcy particularly hard is children.
For many of those in the areas affected by Sandy, school is the most “normal” thing about their lives today. It’s where they learn, socialize, and acquire the skills they will carry with them for the rest of their lives. That’s why we at FedEx know it’s critical to support educational opportunities, especially in areas that have been affected and disrupted by disaster. Education opens doors and provides access to possibilities like nothing else can. But there were schools that were damaged by Sandy, some so much so that they are still under repair.
So, a few weeks ago, working with The Heart of America Foundation, FedEx donated and delivered 4,000 classroom library books to more than 40 schools in New York City to help spark a passion for reading among students and continue that spirit of learning that triumphs over tragedy. In addition, our team members handed out 1,200 additional books for students to take home from P.S. 52 in Staten Island, and another 1,500 books at the Camden Street School in Camden, NJ – two areas very badly hurt by Sandy. Additionally, FedEx volunteers spent a morning reading to younger children at many of the schools.
FedEx’s commitment to the community through service is what we do as a company – a commitment we’ve kept for our first 40 years and through actions like those of FedEx team members in New York and New Jersey continuing to help their neighbors and local communities recover and rebuild, it is a commitment we will certainly keep for the next 40 years and beyond.
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