Local child care center to receive grant

NASHUA – Southern New Hampshire Services Child Development Center is one of five New Hampshire youth-serving organizations to be awarded the “At-Risk Children grant” by the Children’s Literacy Foundation (CLiF), a Vermont-based nonprofit group.

This grant is given to organizations that serve low-income and at-risk children ages 12 and under, and provide an onsite children’s library, a storytelling presentation by a local author or storyteller and two new books for each child to take home. An optional parent seminar with tips on reading to young children is also available for grant recipients, CLiF spokeswoman Erika Nichols-Frazer said.

“CLiF’s At-Risk Children grant is an exciting opportunity to inspire children at risk of growing up with low literacy skills and encourage them to love reading and writing,” Program Manager Jana Brown said.

“We want to reach kids where they are spending time,” Nichols-Frazer said, adding the importance of expanding their reach outside of schools to get to other parts of a community.

CLiF is no stranger to Nashua: last year, Dr. Crisp Elementary School was the recipient of the Year of the Book, a $25,000 grant that gave each student 10 free books to take home throughout the year, bought new books for both the Dr. Crisp Library and the Nashua Public Library and arranged for several author visits throughout the school year. Principal Cherrie Fulton said in June that since the school received the grant, there were marked improvements in student performance on reading and writing tests.

The At-Risk Children grant is a one-time grant, unlike the Year of the Book, which runs, as the name implies, year-round. The library installation and author visit have not been scheduled yet, but they are expected some time in the fall, Nichols-Frazer said.

Other recipients include the Bakersville Elementary School English language Learner program in Manchester, as well as the New Hampshire Foster and Adoptive Parent Association in Concord.

Hannah LaClaire can be reached at 594-1243 or hlaclaire@nashuatelegraph.com.