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.