Ferst Readers Volunteer of the Year, Doris Griffin
Henry County, GA, May 28, 2021 – Ferst Readers honors Doris Griffin as Volunteer of the Year for her leadership in early childhood literacy. Griffin has served on the Community Action Team (CAT) for Ferst Readers of Henry County since its inception in 2005. In 16 years, this team has mailed over 220,000 books to more than 7,700 Henry County children.
As 2020 presented so many unforeseen hurdles, Ferst Readers sought to maintain momentum in its fundraising so that children would continue to receive books monthly. Because of the pandemic, CATs had to develop creative and new ways to raise money locally while adhering to local health and safety protocols.
Ferst Readers of Henry County rose to the challenge. Griffin and her team turned to online fundraising, planning a Book Character Contest to coincide with Halloween. They asked local "celebrities" to dress up as book characters and post photos or videos to social media pages, asking family and friends to vote for them during October. The characters, including Fancy Nancy, Dorothy from The Wizard of Oz, and Greg from Diary of a Wimpy Kid, inspired donors who gave over $14,000 for Ferst Readers of Henry County. Griffin's Book Character Contest was a catalyst for other CATs who duplicated the event, raising more than $30,000 for local communities across Georgia.
The Volunteer of the Year Award was presented to Doris Griffin by Ferst Readers Board Chair Errika Moore during the Virtual CAT Summit on May 7. Although the Summit was held via Zoom, Moore surprised Griffin, presenting the award live and in-person on the dedicated volunteer's front porch. "You make the difference, and you create the impact that we want to have on children and families. We can't thank you enough for your hard work in such a hard year," Moore said, as more than 100 Summit participants applauded from their computer screens. It was a fitting celebration for a volunteer who has dedicated her time and talent to give the gift of reading to the children of Henry County.
For more information about Ferst Readers about how to register a child or donate online, please visit ferstreaders.org