Hotel donates 20,400 books to literacy group

HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - Starwood Hotels & Resorts Waikiki named local non-profit organization Hawaii Literacy the beneficiary literacy initiative "Being a Literacy Builder."

More than 20,400 books contributed by Starwood employees have been given to Hawaii Literacy at Starwood's annual National Sales "Reach the Peak" Conference on Friday.

Starwood Hotels president of North America Division Denise Coll made the donation to Hawaii Literacy's executive director Suzanne Skjold and president of Hawaii Literacy's Board of Directors R. Scott Simon.

Starwood Waikiki's staff and 600 out-of-state Starwood employees have all contributed several new and used children's books.

"I am just amazed at the response and how we've been able to surpass our initial goal of collecting 11,000 books," said general manager Kelly Sanders of Sheraton Waikiki. "The amount of support from our local employees and staff visiting from other states has been tremendous."

Skjold said, "Hawaii Literacy annually collects an average of 16,000 books so this is the single biggest donation our organization has ever received. We hope to continue this amazing partnership with Starwood Hotels & Resorts and its employees."

Starwood's "Being a Literacy Builder" contribution will go to help Hawaii Literacy increase the Family Literacy Libraries and Bookmobile book collection, provide free books for low-income children, and support high-quality literacy programs for under-educated children and low-income families.