Book Trust Hawaii brings the joy of reading to Palolo Elementary

HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - By Jade Storms

Kids love to read, but the sad reality is that some families cannot afford to buy books for their children. Fortunately, students at Palolo Elementary have a special opportunity to receive books to add to their home library.

Book Trust is a non-profit organization that serves children from low-income families across Hawaii to pick and choose their own books to take home. Ann Nicol is the director of Book Trust Hawaii and visited Palolo elementary on Tuesday to see the book trust program in action.

"Book Trust is an organization that inspires a passion for reading in kids," Nicol said. "So we do that by giving kids an opportunity to choose and own books that they wouldn't normally have"

Kaya, a second grader at Palolo Elementary, started reading when she was just five years old and loves bringing home books to her two younger siblings and reading to them. Her favorite book is Mad Libs, a phrasal word game where short stories are completed by the reader.

The organization has partnered with Scholastic Book Club which allows students to have $7 each month to pick out whatever books they want from the school catalogs. For only $70 a year, each student can acquire up to 20 books for their home library.

Reid Kuea is the Principal of Palolo Elementary and believes the partnership is really beneficial to his students and it places the importance of reading at the forefront.

"As far as our students, we have 76% of our student population currently in the housing program," Kuea said. "So to be able to own the books, to take them home, to share with their siblings really makes a huge difference and brings hope to our community."

Book Trust is currently serving more than 200 students in second grade at Palolo, Nanaikapono , and Waianae Elementary schools. They are hoping to extend their program to first grade and then to multiple schools across the island. For more information visit

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