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Twenty-five years ago, Madi­son Mon­son’s great-grand­par­ents built a school and li­brary in a poverty-stricken vil­lage in Mexico. Along with her fam­ily, she has pro­vided on­go­ing sup­port for this school by col­lect­ing books, toys, cloth­ing and school sup­plies. Even at a young age, she found ways to con­trib­ute by sac­ri­fic­ing her Happy Meal toys to do­nate to these chil­dren. Through their work, her great-grand­par­ents taught her first-hand that ser­vice and lit­er­acy were keys to a bet­ter life.

Madi­son was crowned Miss Springville/ Maple­ton 2015 in March and has cho­sen to do­nate her time to en­cour­ag­ing chil­dren in the com­mu­nity to “Read to Suc­ceed.” Madi­son knew that there was a sim­i­lar need to en­cour­age lit­er­acy in our com­mu­nity and that she could ap­ply what she had learned in Mexico to make a dif­fer­ence. Springville and Maple­ton ele­men­tary schools are in need of ad­di­tional com­mu­nity sup­port. There are stu­dents that are not read­ing at grade level and do not have ac­cess to a va­ri­ety of books in their homes. She helped ful­fill this need by or­ga­niz­ing a book drive to build a stronger take-home read­ing li­brary pro­gram.

Through the com­bined ef­forts of fam­ily, friends and our com­mu­nity, Madi­son col­lected over 1,000 books and over $500 in do­na­tions for Cherry Creek Ele­men­tary School. This con­tri­bu­tion will grant each child ac­cess to books that in­ter­est them and mo­ti­vate them to read out­side of class and al­low the school to pur­chase grade-spe­cific books de­signed to im­prove lit­er­acy skills.

In ad­di­tion to sat­is­fy­ing the need for books and re­sources in our ele­men­tary schools, Madi­son has con­tin­ued to en­cour­age our lo­cal chil­dren to read. She has read in class­rooms and spo­ken at as­sem­blies and is cur­rently fo­cus­ing on sum­mer read­ing in or­der to pre­vent the “sum­mer slide” where chil­dren regress due to lack of read­ing. A stu­dent can main­tain his or her read­ing level by read­ing as few as six books.

Dur­ing the month of May, Madi­son pre­sented as­sem­blies to eight dif­fer­ent ele­men­tary schools, work­ing with the Springville City Li­brary to pro­mote its Su­per Hero sum­mer read­ing pro­gram. To date, more than 3,000 chil­dren have signed up and par­tic­i­pated in the weekly events.

As an added in­cen­tive to en­cour­age sum­mer read­ing, Madi­son has cre­ated a “Miss Springville/Maple­ton Su­per Reader” con­test. She has teamed up with lo­cal busi­nesses to pro­vide prizes to the chil­dren ages 8-12 who read through­out the sum­mer. For each book a child reads, they re­ceive a ticket to a draw­ing for prizes in­clud­ing a bike do­nated by Schouten Orthodontics.

You can see Miss Springville/Maple­ton at the Springville City Li­brary each Tues­day and Wed­nes­day through July. Stop by and en­ter her read­ing con­test and check out the great ac­tiv­i­ties and pro­grams the li­brary has to of­fer. You can also fol­low her jour­ney to im­prov­ing lit­er­acy on In­sta­gram at @missspringvillemaple­ton.

The public can meet Miss Springville/Maple­ton Madi­son Mon­son at the Springville Public Li­brary each Tues­day and Wed­nes­day through July as she helps chil­dren sign up for the li­brary’s sum­mer read­ing pro­gram.

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