As a mother, HISD senior executive secretary Fatima Barnett remembers trips to the library and reading with her own children, who are now young adults and avid readers. That’s why she jumped at the chance to read to children at Woodson K-8 as part of the district’s Read Houston Read campaign.
“Since we as employees are advocates for education, this should be an extension of all that we encompass,” said Barnett. “Volunteering for Read Houston Read is a great way to show our commitment.”
Barnett is just one of the many volunteers who are signing up to read to district first-graders through the program. By giving a child a half-hour to an hour of reading time, volunteers can encourage a lifetime love of literature.
“My best memory so far has been providing new books to one of the students. “ Barnett said. “When he shared with me that he liked reading and that he had a new baby sister, he barely spoke above a whisper. I asked him if he reads to her and he told me that he did not have any books at home. I promised him that I would have books for him to take home when I returned the next week. The following week, when I showed him the three books I had bought for him, his eyes lit up, he smiled, and he began to speak just a little louder when he said ‘Can we read the books that you bought for me?’ “
“Filled with emotion I told him, ‘Of course we can’.”