• 600 books donated to students at 3 Central Florida elementary school

    By: Jamie Holmes


    ORANGE COUNTY, Fla. - Students at three Central Florida schools will have books they can bring home.

    Many students at the schools came into the school system without any books in their homes.

    Goodwill of Central Florida, Hope Not International and 9 Family Connection partnered to deliver more than 600 books and 300 backpacks full of school supplies to Rock Lake, Washington Shores and Mollie Ray elementary schools.

    Nearly 100 percent of students at those schools are on free and reduced lunch, and many don’t have a single book to go home to at night.


    “It does shock me with the country we live in. It’s a great place and students should have every resource available to them,” said Nate Stephens, the principal of Washington Shores Elementary School. “We know their lives get started with reading.”

    Goodwill receives thousands of books a year.

    They clean them, then try to get them into schools to be loved all over again.

    “It starts at a young age. If you don’t have access to education, you’re going to be at a loss,” said Jeremey Waller of Goodwill of Central Florida.

    All of the books go to teachers, who then give them to students to keep.

    “Books allow you to escape. Hopefully, they’ll take advantage of the opportunity and escape when it’s needed,” said Danielle Spooney, the assistant principal at Mollie Ray Elementary School.

    School officials said the greatest need for books is at the beginning of the school year and just after Christmas. 

    Next Up: