Local boy holds 'Better World Project' book drive

Heather Nyberg-Schlotzhauer

Beacon Correspondent

Fortuna Middle School 8th grade student River Taylor was given a task in his class by teacher Mrs. Torres. She came up with the "Better World Project" and challenged her students to find something that they could do to improve the world.

"Mrs. Torres gave the kids the project that was meant to engage young students in getting involved in their communities to show then they can make a difference to help create a better world," River's mother, Tina, said.

River thought about many things he could do to help the world and decided that literacy was the topic he wanted to tackle.

"I have always been interested in reading," he said.

That decision led River to come up with a book drive in front of the Fortuna Library. After he knew what he would do he needed a way to get the books to a program to help.

"I was very excited when I learned that there was a local organization that helps people to read," he said.

River contacted the Humboldt Literacy Project and asked them what he could do to help. HLP informed River that they do a lot of tutoring and could use books for reading during that tutoring.

River went to Fortuna Library Librarian Chris Cooper for guidance.

"I made a flier and Chris helped me by putting them up and then donated some books to me," River said.

Cooper also gave River permission to hold his book drive outside the Fortuna Library.

The book drive was very successful and over a truckload of books was collected. Several people made their way down to the drive and one man donated several boxes of books to the cause.

"I think it will make a difference," River said. "My teacher seemed excited, too."

For more information about the Humboldt Literacy Project, call 445-3655.

Photo by Heather Nyberg-Schlotzhauer/Beacon

River Taylor sits in front of the Fortuna Library during his "Better World Project" assigned by his Fortuna Middle School teacher Mrs. Torres. River held a book drive for the Humboldt Literacy Project.