Yesterday, I posted to ask folks to donate books and money to fill the bookshelves of a new Indian school in northern MN. I admit that I was a little nervous sending out the request. I’m reentering the public square and didn’t quite know what the reaction would be. The response has been terrific, and I am so grateful to everyone who has donated thus far. Laurie Villwock, the librarian at the Bug-O-Nay-Ge-Shig school at the Leech Lake Reservation was blown away by everyone’s generosity. All the books she asked for were contributed and we have raised over $50,000 in the first 24 hours. Laurie has added books to the list– which contains everything from Dr. Seuss to Mark Twain to Native authors like Louise Erdrich.
This new school replaced a shamefully dilapidated old school that was a disgrace. The old school’s library was literally the size of a closet and had just two bookcases. As a senator, I fought to get funding to replace the old school, and was honored to speak at the beginning of this school year at the opening of the new school. Its library has a capacity of 20,000 books, and there are a lot of empty shelves.
So, two things.
First, thank you. This is going to make a difference for these children. I cannot tell you how many lives you are going to enhance by being so generous. These are real kids and real books.
Secondly, we’re going to keep going. Laurie doesn’t want to be greedy, but not only has she added to the list, she wouldn’t mind having more than one copy of certain books. And, Laurie will keep renewing the list, or you can donate money.
Again, thank you.