Rotary provides free dictionaries

Members of four Rotary Clubs — Arden, Black Mountain, South Asheville, Weaverville and the Rotary Club of Asheville — recently distributed 2,600 dictionaries to all third-grade students in Asheville City and Buncombe County public schools, including the three public charter schools: Evergreen, Art Space and Francine Delaney.

Dick Hall, a member of the Rotary Club of Asheville and chairman of the Dictionary Project, said Rotary’s literacy project reflected the importance of strong vocabulary skills.

‘For many of students who will receive these dictionaries, these may be the very first books they own,’ Hall said. ‘We are pleased to be able to be a part of their learning experience.’

The dictionaries were hand-delivered to the schools by the Rotarians. Rotarian Sarai Repoley handed out dictionaries to 90 third-graders at Emma Elementary.

‘It was great to see how thrilled the kids were to get the dictionaries,’ Repoley said. ‘The students got really excited when they discovered the longest word in the English language on the last page of the book: It is an enzyme and contains 1,909 letters!’

More than 9 million children across the nation have received a dictionary thanks to the generosity of sponsors like Rotary that have participated in the Dictionary Project.