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Dickinson County RSVP Program Distributes Free Books To Okoboji 1st Graders As Part Of Their "Literacy Partners" Project

Tue 12-24-2019

(Milford)-- The Dickinson County Retired Senior Volunteer Program has launched a new program that promotes reading among first graders. DeNeitt VanDenBroeke, Dickinson County RSVP Coordinator, and Patsy Donovan, an RSVP volunteer, delivered books last week to 74 1st graders at the Okoboji Elementary School. Children were able to select books from an array of Scholastic Book Club options of fiction and non-fiction titles with reading levels most common among first-grade students.

Dawn Bernhard, Northwest Iowa RSVP Director, says it's one of several programs that are put on by the Dickinson County RSVP Office...Dawn Bernhard01 

"RSVP is a national senior corps program. Our purpose is to provide meaningful community service, volunteer opportunity, for anyone 55 plus."

She says the start of the year is a perfect time to get involved with the RSVP program as many of us make those New Year's resolutions...Dawn Bernhard02 

"I would say the easiest thing to do is to contact me, Dawn Bernhard. My phone number is 515-295-8522 and my office hours are 7:30 to 4:30 Monday through Friday. And even though I'm in Kossuth county, I am the the director of the northwest Iowa program and I can make sure to make communication contacts with the appropriate RSVP coordinator through the county where the person would like to do the volunteering."

The “Literacy Partners” project was made possible through a grant from the Dickinson County Endowment Fund. A similar program is offered by Clay County RSVP, which distributed books to about 1,300 students in grades K-6 in the Spencer schools.

Northwest Iowa RSVP serves Clay, Dickinson, Emmet, Kossuth and Palo Alto counties. Iowa Lakes Community College has sponsored the program since 1977. Each of the five Iowa Lakes' campuses in Estherville, Emmetsburg, Spencer, Spirit Lake and Algona house an RSVP office.