Friday, February 19, 2016

Final Chapter

I’ve come to realize that everything in life has a final chapter and in this post, I am writing the final chapter for Karl’s Books. After the UNC Libraries took over the storing of the books, they discovered how many wonderful books we had collected and made the decision to not hold a book drive because we already had enough books. And then it was decided that they actually didn’t have the space to store the books. They restocked the clinic with as many books as the shelves would hold and donated the rest of the books to local groups who needed them. So, the clinic probably has enough books to last a year and then I’m sure they will figure out how to organize one big book drive that will restock the shelves. The hardest part of this whole project has been the lack of storage space. Storage space in all campus and hospital buildings is very valuable and hard to find. When I started this project two months after Karl died in 2007, I just stored the books in my garage and drove them over and used a fold up hand cart to wheel them up to the old clinic in the Gravely Building. And after the new cancer hospital opened, we received donations of money and that helped pay for 2 different storage units and Donna and I would load up my car---yes, I bought a Honda Element partly because it has great hauling space and we would park in the parking deck and use a hand cart to wheel them to the clinic. And then we stored them in the clinic and then the Physician’s Office Building. I’ve recently been in touch with Dr. Gold and he reassures me that the book program will continue. The hospital has a great group of student volunteers and I’m sure they’ll figure out a book drive and a way to keep those shelves filled. So, I wish them well and want to thank everyone who had a part in helping me make this possible. A special Happy Birthday wish to my son Karl who would be 22 years old today. I love you. My love, Kathy Humphries, Book Fairy

Friday, August 28, 2015

Happy Tears

Ever since I started Karl’s Books over 8 years ago, I’ve hoped that one day this book program would become self-sustaining and thanks to the generous staff at UNC Chapel Hill Libraries, this is now possible. We have been storing our books in the Physician’s Office Building across from the hospital for the past 3 years. You pass this building if you park in the parking deck and take the covered walkway to the hospital. The hospital contacted the library staff and told them that the storage space was needed and the books needed to move. So, the library staff has found room to store the books and have also volunteered to do the restocking. Many thanks to Will Owen, Michele Hayslett and the Diversity Committee of the Libraries, Stephanie Mazze Rec Therapist with the clinic and Lauren Davis, Division Administrator with NC Children's Hospital for figuring this all out. I have shed some happy tears over this. Love, Kathy

Friday, December 19, 2014

UNC Libraries 2014 Book Drive

The UNC Chapel Hill 2014 book drive for Karl's Books was hugely successful. 1665 books were collected! The project is run by the Library Diversity Programming and Education Committee and this is their blog entry I want to send these book fairies a special thanks for all of their work and this year it also involved moving the books to storage. I know the children and their families will enjoy many moments of escaping into these treasured books. And thanks to everyone who donated these books. Your generosity is wide reaching and will help Karl's Books to continue another year. Love, Kathy, Book Fairy

Monday, November 3, 2014

UNC Book Drives

I was thinking that Karl's Books has come a long way in 7 1/2 years. I started out hauling boxes of books up the ramps and elevators of the old Gravely Building on a little fold up luggage cart held on with bungee cords and stored the books in my garage. We now store our books at the hospital and have student volunteers restocking the shelves. And because the UNC book drives have been so successful, they collect enough books for the whole year and I've been able to simplify the program. And this year we are making the program even more self-sustaining by having the library co-ordinate with the hospital in moving the books to storage. It has always been my hope that the program could continue without me and we're pretty close. Just to remind you of the types of books we're looking for. We want books that are in really good shape. New is great, but used is OK as long as it is in good condition. These books are a gift to the children. Please no books that make noise (nurse's request), have been written or drawn in, the stickers have been partially used, or are dirty or moldy. I asked the clinic for book suggestions and this is what they said: Book recommendations: board books, Spanish books!!!! (for the very young), series books for elementary school kids and adolescent.... Thanks for checking in. Love, Kathy, Book Fairy

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

2013 Book Drive

On this Christmas Eve I would like to thank everyone for making the annual book drive for Karl’s Books an overwhelming success! A total of 4086 books were collected. UNC Libraries collected 3686 books and 1100 of these were from the Medical School. And Facilities where I work, collected 400 books. What a wonderful stock pile we have now to distribute to the clinic’s patients and their siblings.
On this beautiful sunny afternoon, I wish you peace. Love, Kathy Book Fairy

Monday, September 9, 2013

UNC Students Volunteer

The Book Fairy is getting some much needed help from three current UNC students. Max Nagle, Ashlyn Burns and Katelyn Jones have volunteered to help restock and organized the clinic's book shelves each month.
We met last Friday and with Donna Lucier's help, we pulled all of the many chapter books from the shelves, sorted and restocked. We also put out new board books and picture books. So, we're ready for a busy fall. Karl's Books continues to be a popular distraction at the clinic and the staff appreciate the many books we provide. UNC Chapel Hill Libraries are in the planning stages for their annual book drive for us in December. We love the quality of books they are able to collect. So, I'll be the one to thank you all for your continued support. Love, Kathy Book Fairy

Monday, December 3, 2012

Asheville High School Book Drive

Alex Biggs knows first hand what its like to sit in hospital waiting rooms. His older sister Courtney, who turned 23 this year, has been an oncology patient since she was a baby. They both have been students at North Buncombe High School in Asheville, NC and this year Alex encouraged them to host a book drive for Karl's Books. They collected over 400 books. These books will help other families as they spend hours in the clinic during treatment days. I want to thank this family and their school for their support. Love, Kathy