Little Free Library
Centier Bank partnered with the Northwest Indiana Little Free Library initiative and now houses its first Little Free Library (LFL) in the Gary Downtown Branch located at 504 Broadway. The public is invited to stop by, peruse the bookcase and take a book home with them. Although the Northwest Indiana Literacy Coalition (NWILC) was the first to fill the bookcase for Centier; the bank has now also held a book drive and looks forward to sharing hundreds of books with the public. They guarantee to keep the shelves filled! Dakita Jones, manager of the branch, feels, “The LFL creates a community within itself that directly aligns with the culture of Centier Bank. Our President/CEO recommends yearly book lists to officers of the bank which enhances our service and leadership skills toward an infinite level of learning. Literacy is a key initiative for me as I am an avid book reader as well. I am delighted to share one of my passions with my community. It produces a memorable experience beyond sales and service which allows our clients to leave with so much more than what they arrived with…free knowledge.”
LFL began in Wisconsin in 2009 and was built on the premise of “Take a penny; leave a penny”; however this effort is to promote literacy and “Take a book; leave a book”. This is a perfect fit for Centier, who is built on community involvement and sees literacy as a key component to individuals’ successes. For more information on them, please visit http://littlefreelibrary.org/.
Fortunately, literacy is a learned skill. That means communities can work together to make reading a priority. The LFL effort is introducing Literacy Friendly Neighborhoods, a new program aimed at empowering neighbors to create strategies that help everyone read better in their very own neighborhood. Communities who have committed to working together to ensure literacy in their neighborhoods will be certified, “A Literacy Friendly Neighborhood.”
Ken Barry, Executive Director of Men of Move, which is a nonprofit with a mission to help young men maximize their life’s potential through mentoring, athletics, literacy, leadership and entrepreneurship stopped by the branch to view the library. He now plans to have one of their own when they move into their brand new location at City Life Center, 225 W. 5th Ave., Gary, IN 46402. For more information on this effort, please visithttp://menofmove.com.
Ken stated, “Literacy is the key to unlocking the door of life. Without it no kid can maximize their life’s potential. I am excited about the opportunity to partner with Centier Bank and LFL to bring this innovative approach to helping kids develop a love for reading to downtown Gary.”Dakita Jones and Ken Barry