Now they have the beginning of a new personal library thanks to the school’s Bookcases for Kids project.
Counselor Sandra Courington organized the effort after reading about a successful literacy program in Arkansas called “A Bookcase for Every Child.”
She enlisted the help of Cordova High School teacher Chad Tuggle, whose agriscience students built the bookshelves out of some of the trees uprooted during the storm.
“That’s just another example of how something positive can come out of something so bad,” said principal Dianne Williams.
Several anonymous donors provided funding for a starter set of books to be purchased for each child.
Additional support for the project came from the Miller chapter of the Alabama Power Service Organization and Nick Sanders Jewelers.
Sanders, whose mother’s home in Argo was destroyed in the tornadoes, provided an engraved nameplate for each of the bookshelves.
“The areas where the tornadoes hit like Argo and Cordova are part of my childhood. They’re really close to my heart, so this was my way of giving something back,” he said.
The children were presented with their bookcases during an assembly program on Wednesday, April 25.
Williams said that while the school will continue to help students on an individual basis, the bookcases were the last tornado-related project that officials have planned.
She wants their focus to be on the future rather than the past.
“This was just another way that we are reestablishing normalcy for our students and trying to help them move forward,” Williams said.