NORWALK, Conn., -- Four-year-old Alexa Cipriano grabbed a book from what looks like a large mailbox outside the Norwalk Health Department, much to the delight of everyone gathered around on Wednesday afternoon.
Norwalk Mayor Harry Rilling and other officials officially opened the "Little Library" located near the health department's main entrance in the City Hall parking lot area. The small structure contains free children’s books for the public to enjoy.
Since its installation a few months ago, the Little Library at the Health Department—as well as another at Carousel Preschool—have provided more than 500 books to families in Norwalk, said Mary Oster, the early childhood coordinator for the City of Norwalk.
Theresa Argondezzi, a health educator for the health department, said placing the little library in that spot was by design. Children can gab a book to read while they wait with their parents inside.
"Early literacy is really important in the development of a child just like health is -- so the two go hand in hand," she said.
The construction and installation of the Little Libraries in Norwalk were a team effort. Employees from Eversource Energy built and installed the structures. Lowe’s in Norwalk donated the materials and space for construction. The Woodworkers Club in Norwalk cut and prepared the wood. United Way of Coastal Fairfield County coordinated the volunteer experience for Eversource Energy employees.
Dana Freeman, communications manager with the United Way of Coastal Fairfield County, said bringing the various groups together helps all in the community.
"The Little Library Project is one way to get books into the hands of children who may not otherwise have them," she said.
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