Target Helps Ailing School Libraries Across the Country with Extreme Makeovers and...
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Target Helps Ailing School Libraries Across the Country with Extreme Makeovers and Donations Target and The Heart of America Foundation Officially Kick Off Back-to-School with School Library Makeovers, Helping Thousands of Students Nationwide MINNEAPOLIS, Sept. 8 /PRNewswire/ -- Target and The Heart of America Foundation will officially kick-off the Target Volunteers School Library Makeover program with the unveiling of one of sixteen extreme school library transformations in New York City on September 10, in support of the United We Serve nationwide service initiative. The additional unveilings, along with even more school donations, will happen across the country throughout September and October, just in time for the new school year. With ongoing school budget cuts, the Target Volunteers School Library Makeover program helps schools provide better resources to tens of thousands of kids who need it most. In fact, studies show that students benefit from a strong school library media program, and when compared to students without one, score much higher on standardized tests.* In response to this growing need from schools and building on last year's program launch of eight school makeovers, Target awarded sixteen schools with a complete library transformation, which included over 2,000 new books, advanced technology, new furnishings, shelving, paint, carpeting, and light construction. In addition, Target has incorporated eco-friendly designs and construction practices into each library makeover, including the use of green certified furniture in partnership with Paragaon and Smith Systems and the use of recycled materials in all locations. Also, Target will gift every student from the sixteen schools with seven brand new books to add to their personal at-home reading collection. In all, more than 750,000 new books have been distributed since the program's inception. "The Target Volunteers School Library Makeover program combines our commitment to education and volunteerism, two of our key areas of focus when it comes to giving to the local communities our stores serve," said Laysha Ward, president, community relations, Target. "It's a wonderful opportunity for Target team members across the nation to come together and meet the needs of the community, as well as to equip local schools with the best educational supplies and facilities possible." The school selection criteria for the sixteen makeovers included the percentage of low-income children and overall need for library improvement. The selected schools and the dates each library will be unveiled include**: Unveiling Date School Name City, State September 10, P.S. 76 Bennington School New York, N.Y. 2009 September 18, Broadmoor Elementary School Miami, Fla. 2009 Beecher Hills Elementary School Atlanta, Ga. Roger Q. Mills Elementary School Dallas, Texas September 25, Auer Avenue School Milwaukee, Wis. 2009 Cowell Elementary School Denver, Colo. Walnut Grove Elementary School St. Louis, Mo. Anne Sullivan Communications Center Minneapolis, Minn. October 9, 2009 Wilbur Wright Elementary School Cleveland, Ohio Pittsburgh Arlington Pre-K-8 Pittsburgh, Pa. Mather Elementary School Boston, Mass. October 16, 2009 Lowell Elementary School Phoenix, Ariz. Victoria Elementary School Riverside, Calif. Adams Elementary School Santa Ana, Calif. 74th Street Elementary School and Los Angeles, Gifted Magnet Calif. The Target Property Development team provided specialized business knowledge through a variety of unique pro bono services, which included leveraging their design, construction and project management expertise to help with the significant updates to the libraries. "Through our partnership with Target, we are able to increase the magnitude of our giving nationally, ensuring schools throughout the country have the basic resources they need to help their students," said Angie Halamandaris, president, The Heart of America Foundation. "The library is the place in every school where learning is inspired, and by working with Target, we are able to give that gift of passion for education to those who need it most." In addition to the sixteen fortunate schools that received a complete library makeover, many more will receive help from Target as well. This year, more than 1,600 Target stores and Distribution Centers provided a $500 book award through First Book to a local school of their choice to fund the purchase of books and reading supplies for the fall - just in time to kick-off the new school year. To see a listing of all the schools benefiting from Target Volunteers School Library Makeovers or view a time lapse video of a makeover in action, visit Target.com/libraries. About Target Minneapolis-based Target Corporation (NYSE: TGT) serves guests at 1,719 stores in 49 states nationwide and at Target.com. Target is committed to providing a fun and convenient shopping experience with access to unique and highly differentiated products at affordable prices. Since 1946, the corporation has given 5 percent of its income through community grants and programs like Take Charge of Education. Today, that giving equals more than $3 million a week. About The Heart of America Foundation The Heart of America Foundation's focus is to provide children everywhere in need with the tools to read, succeed and make a difference. A national nonprofit headquartered in Washington, DC, its programs uniquely combine volunteerism and literacy. Since 1997, the organization has provided children living in poverty with over 1.52 million books, and has helped volunteers serve more than 1 million hours giving back to the community through these efforts. About First Book First Book is a non-profit organization with a mission to give children from low-income families the opportunity to read and own their first new books. Since 1992, the organization provides an ongoing supply of new books to children participating in community-based mentoring, tutoring, and family literacy programs. First Book has distributed more than 50 million books to children in over 3,000 communities around the country. * The National Center for Education Statistics ** Additional school, Maxfield Magnet Elementary in St. Paul, MN, was unveiled in April 2009 Contact: Cara Weigand IMRE 410-821-8220 firstname.lastname@example.org Target Communications 612-696-3400 Visit the Target Pressroom: Target.com/pressroom SOURCE Target Cara Weigand of IMRE, +1-410-821-8220, email@example.com, or Target Communications, +1-612-696-3400
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