Reading is incredibly important for early development, but not every child has consistent access to books. However now, elementary school students at Byron Elementary in Michigan can earn them from a token system thanks to a recently donated book vending machine.
The machine was donated by NASCAR driver Erik Jones, who went to the school himself many years ago, and was donated to help celebrate March as Reading Month.
Students can earn tokens for the book vending machine through a reading recognition system throughout the month of March.
A former teacher of Erik’s, Tammy Laurin, contacted him about the idea to bring the book vending machine to the school and help give back to his hometown.
“I am trying to bring the love of books to the next generation of readers and am so grateful to the Erik Jones Foundation for purchasing us a machine,” Tammy said. “I was determined to get one somehow and was ready to hold fundraisers to do it. Erik providing it means we can immediately start putting books into the hands of kids.”
Erik heard that and just wanted to give back.
“I went here and grew up here and so to be able to do something like that – I think it always has a little extra meaning,” he said. “That’s the cool thing for me.”
This article aligns with the UN SDG Partners of the Goals.