RNW Visits the EBCI

Dr. Anthony Chow and UNCG LIS student Anna Sink visited our partners with the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians in beautiful Cherokee, NC. During their visit they met with our partners Adam Lambert at the Qualla Boundary Tribal Library, Tina Saunooke director of the Qualla Boundary Head Start, and Zena Rattler of the Snowbird Community Library. The Reading Nation team gathered community data through surveys and in-depth interviews with community members.

Several book giveaways were hosted for the children at the Qualla Boundary Head Start and Qualla Boundary Library. From this visit alone over 150 books were distributed to the children in the community.

“Many thanks to Adam Lambert, Chief Snead, Tina Saunooke, Donna Robertson, and all of the wonderful people and members of the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indian tribe who spent time with us during our site visit. We learned quite a bit about their history, their dreams and aspirations, and the very real barriers they face, especially as it pertains to early children’s literacy. This is why a community assessment is so important before using our grant funding to try and increase literacy and break down barriers.”

Project Director, Dr. Anthony Chow
Photo from Water Rock Knob, Cherokee, NC. Photo by Adam Lambert, Librarian, Qualla Boundary Tribal Library

UNCG LIS student Anna Sink offered these thoughts to share:

“I was very lucky to visit the Qualla Boundary and meet several members of the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians. Everyone was very accommodating, friendly, and eager to talk about their beautiful home. You feel the sense of community and pride as you drive through town, seeing the painted bears, statues, and the Cherokee language adorning signs and buildings. I was fortunate to get to visit with Adam Lambert, head librarian at the Qualla Boundary Public Library and to hear his thoughts about how libraries play such an important role in the community. I enjoyed hearing his take on the needs of the tribe and ideas to make a difference in people’s lives through literacy and libraries. Passing out books to families and hearing their thoughts about the needs of the community was invaluable. What a treat to meet the people and place that we’ve been researching and talking about for so long!”

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