Gabriella Russo combined her love of books and quest to earn a Girl Scouts Silver Award to help a local nonprofit.
Russo made a Little Free Library box to be placed outside Literacy Forsyth, an organization that provides family literacy services as well as GED and ESL classes for adults.
Russo worked with Literacy Forsyth executive director Pamela Burlingame to customize the little library to the organization’s needs. Since it would be placed outside, the box needed to waterproof, so they came up with the idea of converting an old newspaper box.
“(It) would be water-tight and already have a door with a window,” Russo said.
Russo and her mom, Kim Russo, one of her troop’s co-leaders, found a metal newspaper box on eBay. They picked it up on a recent family trip to New Jersey.
Over the next several months, Russo sanded, painted and designed a logo before delivering the box to Literacy Forsyth on Sept. 19. She stocked the little library with books for all ages and interests and included a sticker in each book indicating it was part of a Girl Scout Silver Award project.
The project was perfect timing for Literacy Forsyth. The organization recently opened a “lending library” inside its facility off Browns Bridge Road, and Russo’s project is a nice compliment.
“The outside Little Free box allows us to further serve our students, neighbors and the community,” Burlingame said.
The project made Russo the first from her troop to earn the Silver Award, the highest award a Girl Scout cadette can earn.
Now, she has her sights on earning the Gold Award, the highest service award for a Girl Scout.