Madi Wilson, a local third grader, is gifting the Goleta and Santa Ynez Valley Libraries with her special “World Changer” pencil sets to use as prizes for the libraries’ upcoming Winter Reading Challenge, “Books Like Us.”
“Giving the pencils makes my heart so happy, like a burst of confetti! I want all the kids to know that they matter to the world,” said Madi.
Through her nonprofit Madi’s Treasure Box, Madi and her mother, Vashti Wilson, are realizing a mission to provide multicultural tools promoting literacy and inclusion to schools and libraries across the United States.
This past summer, Madi asked her mom if she could raise money to bring multicultural books and crayons to local schools. Thanks to media coverage across the nation, including The Washington Post, NBC Evening News and more, the fundraiser, aptly titled Madi’s Treasure Box, raised more than $40,000 within six weeks of fundraising on GoFundMe. The initiative will provide 14 U.S. schools and the nonprofit, Children’s Bureau, with multicultural books and crayons.
Each 24-pack of crayons consists of 16 skin colors, 4 hair colors and 4 eye colors. Madison says she wants kids to have more options for skin colors than just peach and brown.
“Madi and her inspiring mission are a perfect fit for our Winter Reading program, Books Like Us, and we are so grateful they’ve reached out to us,” said Carey McKinnon of the Solvang Library.
Soon the libraries will be able to offer patrons books from Madi’s Treasure Box collection, as the nonprofit is working to donate books to all three libraries: Goleta, Solvang and Buellton. More details on that will be forthcoming as the books arrive at the libraries.
Meanwhile, readers of all ages can sign up for the Winter Reading Challenge that started Jan. 1 at goletavalleylibrary.beanstack.org, or download the free app for Apple and Android devices to log their books on the go. The six-week program for children, teens and adults will run through Feb. 13, with other prizes donated by Blender’s, Chili’s, The Home Depot, Islands, Mesaburger, Miner’s Ace Hardware and Sprouts, as well as by the respective Friends of the Library of Goleta, Santa Ynez Valley and Buellton.
For more information on programs and events at the Goleta and Santa Ynez Valley Libraries, see the calendar at www.GoletaValleyLibrary.org or check out the Facebook pages of the different library branches at facebook.com/goletavalleylibrary, facebook.com/buelltonlibraries or facebook.com/solvanglibrary.
Now that Madi’s Treasure Box is a nonprofit, those interested in donating can do so directly on the website www.MadisTreasureBox.com.