Thursday, April 24, 2014

Get to Know the Advisory Board: Anica Wong

First Book's strength comes from its donors and volunteers. In each community it serves, First Book has an Advisory Board of volunteers committed to bringing new books to children in need. Today, we'll get to know First Book-Denver Metro Advisory Board Member Anica Wong.
Name: Anica Wong

Employer: AmeriCorps volunteer through Mile High United Way

Hometown: Delta, CO

What is your favorite children's book?  
My favorite kid's book is "Two Pesos for Catalina." It tells the story about a young girl trying to decide what to spend her two pesos on. While the story itself was cute and touching, the reason I loved it as a kid is that the words are so lyrical. When read out loud (as adults, we should do this more), the words seemed to flow into a song. "Two pesos for Catalina...two pesos for Catalina to spend." That last word vibrates up and then down, flitting off the page. There's nothing better than words that take flight into our own lives. 

Who is your favorite author?  
This question is like asking a parent who their favorite child is...there's no right answer! I love too many books and too many author styles to pick just one. My most recent favorites, though, are Jeffrey Eugenides, Wallace Stegner, Cormac McCarthy, David Finkel and Eowyn Ivey.  

Why do you volunteer with First Book? 
I am an AmeriCorps volunteer literacy tutor. I currently work with K-3rd grade students to get them up to grade-level reading. I wanted to give this year of service to the community because I was blessed with a very word-rich childhood. My mom worked in a library, so I was surrounded by stories beyond my wildest imagination. My dad always read the daily newspaper, sparking my love of the written word. It wasn't until I grew up and saw parts of the world that I realized not everyone was as lucky as I was to have a family who placed such a high importance on reading. And so, that is one of the reasons I volunteer with First Book. Getting books into the hands of our community's children is the first step to sparking that life-long love of reading. 

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