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North Castle Daily News

Gamechanger Book Drive Collected Over 1200 Books for Neighbors Link

June 25, 2015
Gamechanger, a free referral service that connects Westchester families to highly qualified tutors, teachers, and coaches, collected over 1200 books for Neighbors Link Northern Westchester throughout May 2015.

The mission of Neighbors Link Northern Westchester is to strengthen the whole community by actively enhancing the healthy integration of immigrants. Neighbors Link’s strategy is to educate, empower, and employ immigrant families and individuals whose lives have been economically impoverished and educationally deprived. 

Neighbors Link
"Our sincere thanks to gamechanger for the successful month-long book drive for Neighbors Link Northern Westchester,” says Susan Aarhus, Volunteer Manager of Neighbors Link Northern Westchester. “With their support, we were able to build a permanent library of books in our center, which will be used by families, children, students, and adult ESL learners as they master the English language. Over 1200 books were collected and divided between our center and our after school program, Learning Links, at Mount Kisco Elementary. Especially helpful were the many children's books and popular series books, such as Magic Treehouse and Diary of a Wimpy Kid, which made excellent additions to the collection! Our thanks to gamechanger and the community for your continued support of the mission of integration.”

Community support made all of the difference this year for gamechanger’s second annual book drive. “Everyone’s individual efforts of sifting through books and dropping them at local businesses resulted in the entire community making a significant impact,” says gamechanger co-founder, Marilyn Rifkin. “Gamechanger relied on community involvement to make this a successful initiative, and our community overwhelmed us with their generosity.”

In addition, several businesses and with their helped make it significantly easier for community members to donate books.

Much thanks goes to the following businesses who graciously hosted drop boxes:

TWIST, Briarcliff,
The Office of Dr. Kathy Hirsch, Mount Kisco,
Walgreens, Chappaqua,
Mount Kisco Seafood, Mount Kisco,
Rockin’ Jump, Mount Kisco,
Douglas Elliman – Armonk and
Douglas Elliman – Katonah

“Our goal is to motivate children to read, to open up their worlds, and to better their lives,” notes Deborah Notis, co-founder of gamechanger, LLC. “We wanted to help make books readily available to children who do not have easy access to them.”  Reading enhances concentration, world awareness, and brain activity, all of which help to make children more successful as students.  Ultimately, this is gamechanger’s objective – to help create a well-rounded, confident and successful child.

Last year, with the help of the community, gamechanger collected over 800 books for the Ossining Children’s Center.