Gilmore Elementary School in the Sandtown-Winchester neighborhood of west Baltimore was the recipient of more than 2,600 books as the first school in Mayor Catherine Pugh’s inaugural Children’s Book Drive.
The book drive took place between April 10 and April 17 to collect new and gently used books for grades K-5.
The mayor said she was asked to help after the school built a new library, and hoped the book drive would give people an opportunity to “make an investment in our children’s minds.”
Yellow collection bins were set up at City Hall, city office buildings and several Enoch Pratt Free Library branches.
“I set up these little yellow bins in front of City Hall and I could not believe that so many people walked by every day dropping books,” she said during an April 26 event to deliver the books to the school.
A truck delivering the books arrived at 9 a.m. sharp, and several volunteers were ready to assist bringing the books inside. Among those carrying boxes were Councilman Leon F. Pinkett III (D-7th) and members of The Baltimore Renaissance, which bills itself as a community impact organization.
Kahan Dhillon, president of The Baltimore Renaissance, said the book drive was the organization’s first project. He said they had help from other organizations such as the St. Francis Neighborhood Center, which served as their main drop-off site.
“We contacted a lot of resources, public and private,” Dhillon said. “We got everybody together and we worked, effectively, 24-7 in five days to put this together.”
He added that the mayor wanted to make sure that every student at the school was able to receive three books that they could take home.