Thanks to the efforts of Administrative Librarian, Melody E. Coleman, a unique partnership has been developed between the West Chicago Public Library District , DuPage African Methodist Episcopal Church, and the Illinois Youth Correction center in Warrenville.
The program, named B.E.N.D. (Books Enlighten, Nourish and Delight), provides quarterly delivery of books and magazines to the juvenile females incarcerated at IYC-Warrenville.
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This Level 1 maximum juvenile female facility serves its population with multi-service needs, including GED and high school diploma academic services, an in-patient substance abuse treatment program, vocational programs, mental health services, medical services, clinical services, leisure time activities, parenting education, and family reunification programming. The average age of the juvenile female population of the center is 16.3 years.
Working with their IYC contact, Eric Crockwell, the Library is providing quarterly deliveries of books and magazines of particular appeal to the young women held at IYC-Warrenville which no longer fit the Library's collection. "This unique partnership is just one example of the Library's many outreach initiatives developed to serve the needs of our surrounding community," said Coleman, "and it is being supported by the Women's Missionary Society of DuPage AME Church."
The first delivery, consisting of 90 books and 112 magazines, was made on June 13 by Joslyn Jones, WCPLD Youth Services Manager.