CLEARFIELD — It’s bigger than a bird house, unless it’s for a really big bird.
It’s more colorful than a mail box, at least most of the mailboxes around.
And though at first glance you might be tempted to think of it as a bird house or a mail box, if you look inside, you’ll find a different kind of treasure.
Thanks to the work of three Eagle Scouts, the neighborhoods around Wasatch Elementary now feature colorful little boxes that double as mini-libraries.
Ben Denhalter and Conrey Miller coordinated the construction and painting of the boxes for their projects. Ian Orme worked to have them installed in neighborhoods and collected books to fill them.
“It’s a great place to put them and let these kids have access to them,” said Mary Ann Perkins, coordinator of the Davis Community Learning Center nearby.
Clearfield has twice the poverty level of any other city in Davis County, said Perkins.
“A lot of kids have two parents but both are working long hours and just don’t have the time to take them to the library,” she said. “A lot of immigrants live here and they don’t even know about libraries and so we’re trying to get the word out about libraries too.”
The library boxes carry books of interest to children and youth and are free.
Neighborhood children can take the books that interest them out and return them on their own schedule.
“If a child keeps a book it’s OK with us,” said Perkins. “If a disadvantaged kid takes a book and wants to keep it, that’s wonderful. We’ll get more. We’ve had some wonderful books donated to us that are gently used.”
Perkins emphasized the value of reading skills and the difference it makes when parents read to their children.
“We thought it would be a good idea to have books throughout the neighborhood so that any time these kids wanted to read, they’d be available to them,” she said.