Starting a New Half Century!
RIF RAP
January 2023
As NOVA RIF begins its second half century, we start the January RIF RAP with a look back -- in celebration of 10 children's book authors and illustrators who passed away in 2022. All are profiled on our website, with links to obituary tributes and additional information. We hope you will click here to take a look because there's a good chance you will find some great book options for your kids to read! See how many of these book titles you remember!

Elizabeth Vaughan ES's "Escape Room"
What could be more fun than working with your third grade schoolmates as part of an elaborate quest? At PWC's Vaughan Elementary, kids rotated through five activity stations, hunting for code words to uncover the ultimate prize. Once completed, the code phrase “Reading is Fundamental” was revealed. The prize? A free book from RIF of NOVA! Such fun for these junior sleuths, thanks to librarian and NOVA RIF liaison Donna McDonald and Gifted Education teacher Kelcie Conroy.
Warm up with a Good Book -- Yorkshire ES
Finding the ideal read and enjoying hot cocoa was the perfect activity for fourth grade students at PWC's Yorkshire Elementary School. It was the last day of school before winter break ... and it was also pajama day! In their comfy clothes, the students carefully selected their NOVA RIF books, wrote their names in the front covers, and then enjoyed hot cocoa, served up by Yorkshire reading teacher and RIF of NOVA liaison Bethany Drake (with cap in photo) and staff members Amy Simpson (l) and Megan Hoover. What a wonderful way to begin the holiday break!
Note: Photos from other NOVA RIF book distributions from the 2022-2023 school year can be found by clicking here.
Kindness Matters! Just Ask the Wolftrap ES Kids!
We started our like-new, gently used book program during the pandemic because so many children had no access to books. The program has been wildly successful, drawing in almost 20,000 books, to date. Such kindness and generosity from the NOVA RIF community! Thank you!
First graders at Wolftrap Elementary School took to heart a poster in the school office that encourages students to be kind to others. With the help of teacher Lindsay Siggers, they collected over 100 NEW books for RIF of NOVA to spread their joy in reading to others. Other children -- and adults too -- are getting in on the act, collecting like-new and new books for NOVA RIF kids! 
The Wingenfeld brothers, second grader Hugo (l) and third grader Gunnar, shared some of the books they had outgrown in the hope that NOVA RIF children would be able to enjoy reading as much as they do.  
Anna Promen, second grade, is ready for chapter -- and graphic -- books so she decided to share her collection of beginning readers with younger children. She hopes her books will help others learn to read.
Teacher Eric Fritz unloaded books collected by the Lightridge High School English Honor Society. Honor Society student Lyn Motter had the idea for a book drive and organized the event. However, he couldn't be there for the photo because he was on his way to Disney World with the school band. Zowie! Great work!
Tharren Clark has been a longtime friend of RIF of NOVA. For the fourth year in a row, he purchased brand new books for NOVA RIF kids and delivered them in two bins! The books have already been distributed to children at Alexandria's Patrick Henry K-8 School. Thank you again, Tharren!
Mary Beth Manion Morell, a former school librarian, runs an online bookshop called Lion & Dragonfly Book Collections. For every five books sold, she donates a book to a place where it is needed most. Mary Beth donated 100 new hard cover picture books from last summer's sales to NOVA RIF kids! Wonderful! TY!
After a 34-year career in Alexandria City Public Schools, Susan Stickles has joined the NOVA RIF board. As a kindergarten and first grade teacher (among many other roles), this Alexandria native focused on developing a love of reading in her students."Getting books into the hands of children, especially our youngest students, can change their lives," she says. We are delighted to include Susan as a new member of our board.
When Sarah Bohn was asked to become part of a volunteer team to help stage NOVA RIF's 50th anniversary Golden Gala, she said yes. This media relations specialist went to work, bringing her business skills and her love of books to the table. As part of the Gala, her firm, French Press Printing, designed and then donated custom tote bags for all Gala attendees. RIF of NOVA is thrilled she has joined in as our newest board member!
Full bios for both new board members can be found on our website by clicking here. If you are interested in joining our board or helping with our programming, please click here.
Mary Chapin’s life was filled with friends, books, and reading. She was a member of at least two and sometimes three book groups at a time, often finishing a book just hours before a meeting! Mary was diagnosed with glioblastoma in September of 2020 and bravely battled the disease until she passed away in August 2022. One of her book clubs, along with several other friends, decided on a donation to RIF of NOVA in Mary's memory because of Mary’s love of reading and her appreciation of NOVA RIF's mission. Read more about this remarkable woman on our website by clicking here. Wrote Sari, "I know she would feel very loved and honored to be remembered in this way."

We count on YOU for all our funding! So please give generously!
*Contribute online by Paypal or credit card at: https://donorbox.org/donate-to-rif-of-nova. Donate links can be found on every page of our website, too.
*Send a check to our mailbox:
RIF of NOVA
P. O. Box 7012
Arlington, VA 22207-0012

*Register with smile.amazon.com. Type in Reading is Fundamental of Northern Virginia, Inc. to select us as the charity you want to support. Amazon will donate 0.5% of your eligible purchases to RIF of NOVA. The 0.5% can really add up!
*If your workplace holds a United Way campaign, designate RIF of NOVA as your chosen philanthropy. Our United Way # is 8959.

Thank you for any donation -- no matter how big or small! And thank you for being part of the RIF of NOVA community!
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