On Dec. 30, hundreds of families lost everything in the Marshall fire, including their children’s personal book collections. The Boulder Book Store, a local independent bookstore located on Pearl Street, has partnered with the non-profit Impact on Education to raise money to help these children rebuild their personal libraries.
“For these kids who lost their books, to even get back a handful of them can be a real comfort,” said Arsen Kashkashian, co-manager and head of the fundraiser at Boulder Bookstore. “Books can make you feel like you’re safe and that you have what you need.”
On Jan. 10, over a week after the Marshall Fire, the Boulder Book Store launched its fundraiser in partnership with Impact on Education, a non-profit whose main goal is to support students in Boulder Valley public schools with supplemental funding and resources in order to address critical needs and opportunity gaps.
“Beyond the importance of literature for education, books can help children escape to imaginary worlds while also creating a sense of home,” said Catherine Wessling, the communications director for Impact on Education. “We’re grateful to the community and Boulder Bookstore for providing these important resources for students during a difficult time.”
Impact on Education will be assembling comfort kits with $100 Boulder Bookstore gift cards so children can purchase books to rebuild their personal libraries. In addition, the kits will include letters of support from students and community members, art supplies, journals and other age-appropriate items. They will also be providing the same kits for educators that were impacted by the Marshall Fire.
The Boulder Book Store will be adding 50% extra to the gift card value for students and educators, which will enable them to buy $150 worth of books. Books sold at the store cost anywhere from $7 to $25, so this will allow individuals who were affected to purchase between 6 and 20 books.
“Boulder is a very literate community,” said Kashkashian. “Within the last year especially we have seen an uptake in reading. We are a community that values and knows the importance of the written word. This is how we, as an independent bookstore, have been able to run so well. Now we want to give back to the community that has supported us so well.”
As of Jan. 24, the bookstore reached its $87,000 fundraising goal, successfully closing out the fundraiser.
“We just hit our goal as of this morning, Jan. 24. We are so pleased,” Kashkashian said.
Contact CU Independent Assistant Arts and Entertainment Editor Haley Lauritzen at firstname.lastname@example.org.