NANAKULI (KHNL) - Developing language skills during a child's early years is critical to their success.
That's motivated one Nanakuli family doctor to volunteer her time to read to children of low-income families.
Noted island doctor Mary ''Kit'' Glover opens a childrens' book, and brings it to life by reading outloud.
Glowing smiles light up the room.
But Dr. Glover is motivated by much more than just her love of children.
"I learned in my training as a family doctor that the first three years of our life, everything is getting larger," said Dr. Glover. "But our brains are still building a different quality of building blocks and the ones for language development are built very early.
The latest numbers show Hawaii has a high illiteracy rate.
Virtually one out of every five adults in the islands basically can't read.
"Language and literacy plays a big part of it and she is willing to give up herself, catching the bus three time a week, and walking from the bus top to here, just so that she can interact with the children," said Lani Kuakini of Nanakuli Head Start Program.
"It's very gratifying and if I approach from the park, and the kids are out in the park, they'll be several of them that give me a hug, right away, and yell, 'Hi Doctor Glover!' Same thing when I leave, they all want to give me a hug of thanks."