Cards to be delivered to Children’s Hospital
By Gary Lloyd
PINSON — When April Wallace was in elementary school, she and her classmates exchanged Valentine’s Day cards.
It’s a tradition most schools take part in.
Now the director at the Pinson Public Library, Wallace thinks beyond the classroom walls. The library is in its third year, and for the third time has participated in making valentines for patients at Children’s Hospital, an event the Jefferson County public libraries have been a part of since 1983.
Valentines are made by children and adults who visit county libraries during January and February. The Pinson Public Library allowed residents to come Feb. 2-9 to make valentines out of construction paper, kits and bookmarks.
“I think it’s good, especially for kids,” Wallace said. “A lot of times kids are kind of sheltered, they don’t know someone personally who is sick or that someone might want a valentine or need a little cheering up. I think it’s nice that it might bring a little bit of awareness to the younger kids who might not realize that not everybody gets to be at home for all the holidays.”
This year has been Pinson’s greatest participation. The library totaled 40 or so valentines in 2014, but had reached that number in the first three days of this year’s event. Mostly parents bring small children to the library to draw on the folded construction paper. Parents of children too young to write sign their child’s name.
“It’s just a nice activity they can do any time,” Wallace said. “They’re proud of their little cards that they’ve made.”
All cards will be taken to the Birmingham Public Library’s Southside location, where they’re sorted and then delivered on Valentine’s Day to Children’s Hospital.
Wallace said the Pinson Public Library will continue participating. The Trussville Public Library also participates.
“Of course it is very important to remember the children who are in the hospital,” said Trussville Public Library Children’s Librarian Becky Thrasher Burchfield. “They definitely can use some words of encouragement and well wishes. It’s nice for them to know that someone hopes they feel better, especially at a holiday where people are showing how much they care about one another.”
Burchfield said it’s also good for the children who come into the library to do something to help people in the community.
“This is something fun for them to do that is also beneficial to others,” she said. “When kids are helping other kids, it is a very positive thing, and everybody wins.”
The Pinson Public Library also, for the first time, has a monthlong “I Love My Library” campaign ongoing in February. People can write on a colored paper heart why they love the library. The hearts are taped to a door in the library’s entrance. Last week, that door already had close to 20 hearts taped to its edges, some red, some pink, some lime green.
“Hopefully we’ll have our door covered in bright colors,” Wallace said.
Contact Gary Lloyd at firstname.lastname@example.org and follow him on Twitter @GaryALloyd.