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COLUMBIA – A $20,000 grant for Daniel Boone Regional Library will allow children ages K-12 who cant regularly access the library to still get books. The Summer Library Program is designed to allow books to be mailed directly to children who live far away from the library itself.

“It’s a program that we specifically call ‘Books by Snail’ and what it does is allow kids out in the county areas that don’t have a physical public library building, to receive books in the mail that they would like to read in the summer,” Sarah Howard said.

Howard is the children and youth services manager for the library and said this can really help children, especially those who don’t use tablets or phones regularly.

“In a lot of our service area there is not high speed internet, though they might have the ability to have a phone or tablet, they may not have the fast internet to download a book,” Howard said.

Secretary of State Jay Ashcroft said the benefits of summer reading have been well documented and this can increase an important part of the educational process.

“One of the best ways to engage children and young people in their local library is through summer library programs,” Ashcroft said.

Howard said can be more efficient than the already-operational book mobile.

“The book mobile would mean someone would have to be in a certain place at a certain time, so if you were a kid and you wanted to get your book to read that you wanted, you’d have to be in a certain town at a certain time,” Howard said.

The grant will help cover overall book collection, staff efforts and the cost of mailing of the books for the “Books by Snail” summer program. The program is set to start mid-May.