Verizon Foundation awarded Avon Grove Public Library a $20,000 grant for technology enhancements.Library and Verizon representatives commemorated the act with a check presentation on Jan. 3.

"We want to thank Verizon for its interest in education and literacy," said Kay Wells, president of the library's board of trustees. "And Senator Pileggi has been more than kind to Southern Chester County and to our library for sure."

Library Director Kim Ringler applied for the grant to enhance the library's literacy education and computer technology training and enrichment programs.

The funds will help support the initiative Link to Lifelong Learning: Computer Enrichment for the Entire Family, according to a press release. This program will provide formalized instruction in computer literacy for adults and help support a summer technology based program for school-age children.

Slated to begin in February, the Link to Lifelong Learning will include subjects such as: introduction to computers; surfing the Internet; E-mail basics; Microsoft Word I, II and III; Microsoft Publisher, Excel and

Access; online job hunting; basic Web publishing and design; online databases; Wikis; blogs and more.

The children's after-school program will also start in February and will use curriculum-based soft-ware selected by educators. It covers all basic subject areas as well as supplementary topics, such as foreign language pack ages, typing tutorials, photo editing and advanced learning software and summer enrichment programs.

"Since technology impacts our daily lives, including how we access and use information, it is crucial that public libraries take steps to provide computer training and development for all residents. We are extremely grateful to Verizon for helping us implement such an important program," Ringler said.

"Verizon has an ongoing loyalty and commitment to literacy.

Many employees volunteer, but we also want to support it financially. We make literacy grants throughout the state" said William Petersen, president of Verizon Pa. "Senator Pileggi is a very passionate advocate for libraries and learning."

When Verizon was seeking a candidate for one of its literacy grants, State Senator Dominic Pileggi recommended Avon Grove Public Library, Petersen said.

"We are here today because of Senator Pileggi's advocacy, and I can see why this is a very, very special place," he said referring to the library. "Young kids, and not so young kids, are who will really take advantage of this grant."

Verizon has shown its support for Avon Grove Public Library in the past.

Last year, the library purchased two Early Literacy Stations (ELS) designed to help children strengthen their literacy skills, thanks to a $5,000 grant from Verizon.

Stanley Schuck, Verizon director of external affairs for Chester, Buck and Berks counties, presented that check to Ringler on Feb. 9, 2007.

? Registration for these programs will begin on Jan. 28 at the library, 117 Rosehill Ave., West Grove. For more information, call 610-869-2004.

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