After recent changes to our curriculum, we found ourselves with a surplus of books taking up valuable storage space in our warehouse, which sparked an inspired idea. And that’s how Lincoln Learning Solutions’ Great Book Giveaway was born.
Our CEO, Bob Clements, and Chief Sales and Marketing Officer, Dr. Rachel Book, decided to turn these extra books into a community event to promote literacy. After all, as an educational nonprofit, philanthropy is the backbone of our business model.
“Rather than adding all of this valuable material to the local landfill, our staff wanted to see that these professionally illustrated books that teach timeless lessons were put to good use,” Clements said. “As a nonprofit focused on education, we believe this event fits perfectly with our mission.”
Leading up to the Great Book Giveaway in late March, Lincoln Learning donated books and course kits to many local Western Pennsylvania organizations, including:
- Sts. Peter and Paul Catholic School
- Tiger Pause Youth Ministry
- Women’s Center of Beaver County
- The School at McGuire Memorial
- MHY Family Services
- Big Brothers Big Sisters of Beaver County
- Western Pennsylvania School for Blind Children
- Mars Area Public Library
- South Butler Community Library
- We’re at YOUR Service
- Several Little Free Libraries around Beaver County
With help from local media and good, old-fashioned word of mouth, news about our event spread fast. The Great Book Giveaway was open to all educators and child service providers. Many traveled from the tri-state area to stock their bookshelves for the children they serve.
Great Book Giveaway attendees could not have been happier. Many of them left with their vehicle trunks full of books and educational supplies for their students.
“The books and flash cards I was able to get were AMAZING! Thank you, Lincoln Learning Solutions,” said Louanne Lupo Olesnevich, Beaver Falls Middle School library aide.
Lincoln Learning staff volunteers were also moved by the outpouring of gratitude from educators who attended the event.
“I met a teacher who wanted to give a book to each of her students as an end-of-year gift, but she struggled to get enough books donated to do so last year,” Alexis Fabyanic, Research and Development Specialist at Lincoln Learning and event volunteer said.
“It broke my heart that she was trying to do something so selfless and kind for these kids but was having a hard time pulling it off. She assured me that with the help of the Great Book Giveaway, she wouldn’t have an issue this year,” Fabyanic said.
Zack Simmen, a Lincoln Learning Solutions Specialist and event volunteer echoed Fabyanic's sentiments.
"The joy on the faces of the educators as they left with arm fulls and even carloads of books was matched only by the joy we felt in knowing the books would soon be in the hands of eager students," Simmen said.
All remaining books were packaged for distribution to additional local charities, libraries, and educational partnerships.
Timmi-Jo Pashuta, a substitute teacher at New Horizon School and Baden Academy noted the significance of the Great Book Giveaway.
“This was outstanding,” Pashuta said. “Students for years to come will benefit from your generosity.”