In 2017, Jennifer Williams, a fifth-grade teacher, started buying books and distributing them around her community of Danville, VA. “Wherever I go, I carry books,” said Williams. She noticed a discrepancy in her students: those who owned books at home were generally more successful in school and had better cognitive and literacy skills. Williams regularly donates huge numbers of books to schools and families, and ensures the 40 local Little Free Libraries are stocked with books for all ages. She also coordinates and leads a weekly women’s book club at the Danville Jail. Most club members were not readers before the group’s inception in 2019, but so far, the group has read 61 books. “It’s really having an impact on their lives,” said Mike Mondul, the sheriff of Danville.

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