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Read all about it: Sorority, St. Luke’s joins forces to bring books to needy kids
October 24, 2017

A Lafayette College sorority and St. Luke’s University Health Network will be on the same page Wednesday when they combine efforts to stamp out illiteracy.

Members of the Pi Beta Phi’s Pennsylvania Eta Chapter at Lafayette College have collected hundreds of new and gently used children’s books to distribute to the area’s needy families.

Members of the St. Luke’s community also have collected thousands of books during its annual Book Drive held in October.

The sorority will bring its books to St. Luke’s Department of Community Health & Preventive Medicine office at 10 a.m. Wednesday, Oct. 25. After the books are sorted, they will be distributed to area children to promote literacy.

Jane George, Assistant Vice President of Government Relations for St. Luke’s University Health Network, is an alumni advisor to Lafayette’s Pi Beta Phi chapter. The sorority’s national philanthropy is literacy. Another mission of the sorority is to support local organizations and philanthropic efforts.  George saw that St. Luke's Book Drive “fit perfectly with the sorority’s philanthropic goals” and suggested they work together. Her suggestion was met with enthusiasm on both sides, she said.

“It has been so awesome being able to see how many books we’ve collected and involve the whole Lafayette Community in our efforts to strike out illiteracy and raise money, books and awareness in the process,” said Lexi Kelley, Vice President of Philanthropy for the chapter.

“We really appreciate St. Luke’s allowing us to be part of this book collection.”

Sara Klingner, MSN, RN, of St. Luke’s Literacy Initiatives said, she is pleased that the Pi Beta Phi students have joined the St. Luke’s Book Drive this year. “More books coming in means more books going out to students who might not have access otherwise,” she said.

The St. Luke’s Book Drive has been an annual event for about the last ten years and every year it collects more than the previous year. In 2016, almost 9,000 books were collected. “I know we will top 10,000 this year with the addition of St. Luke’s Monroe campus and the help of the Lafayette College students,” Klingner said.

St. Luke’s supports a number of Literacy Initiatives because teaching children to enjoy books and learn to read puts them on a path to greater success in life, George said.

The books collected are distributed through St. Luke’s Adopt a School programs, Network health centers, community events, and through the Little Free Libraries located at some of its Adopt a Schools as well as some of the St. Luke’s hospitals. 

St. Luke’s Community Health & Preventive Medicine office is located at 1530 Eighth Avenue in Bethlehem.

Media Contact:

Sam Kennedy, Corporate Communications Director, 484-526-4134, samuel.kennedy@sluhn.org

About St. Luke’s

Founded in 1872, St. Luke’s University Health Network (SLUHN) is a fully integrated, regional, non-profit network providing services at seven hospitals and more than 270 outpatient sites in the greater Lehigh Valley. The network’s service area includes 10 counties: Lehigh, Northampton, Carbon, Schuylkill, Bucks, Montgomery, Berks and Monroe counties in Pennsylvania and Warren and Hunterdon counties in New Jersey.  In partnership with Temple University, St. Luke’s created the region’s first and only regional medical school campus. Dedicated to advancing health education, St. Luke’s operates the nation’s oldest School of Nursing and 23 graduate medical educational programs and is considered a major teaching hospital – the only one in its region. Repeatedly, including 2017, St. Luke’s earned Truven’s 100 Top Major Teaching Hospital and 50 Top Cardiovascular Program designations, in addition to other honors for clinical excellence. St. Luke’s is a multi-year recipient of the Most Wired award recognizing the breadth of St. Luke’s information technology applications such as electronic medical records, telehealth, online scheduling and pricing information. St. Luke’s is also recognized as one of the state’s lowest cost providers.