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HarperCollins Publishers Refurbishes Library For Students of P.S. 81 in Brooklyn, NY

NEW YORK, NY – HarperCollins Publishers has refurbished the library of Public School 81 in Brooklyn, and yesterday revealed the results to school administrators, teachers, students, parents and community leaders. Through their relationship with NYC-based education nonprofit Change for Kids, the company covered the cost of new furniture, paint and supplies for the library, and made in-kind donations of more than 1,600 children’s books, 35 computers, and a printer.

On February 27 and 28, more than forty HarperCollins employees donated their time to completely redecorate the school’s library. The goal was to make the room both a library and a center for the community – a safe place that will allow both students and parents to take advantage of resources many take for granted, such as access to books, information, and the internet.

P.S. 81 had been without a library for ten years. Now, the school has a multi-functional library with the theme of “nature” and imaginative touches to make the students feel at home, complete with an adult learning area and computer stations. The bookcases were painted a royal blue to brighten the space, and the students have use of all new furniture, including 32 chairs donated by Business Interiors by Staples.

“We have been waiting for this library for 10 years and are so grateful to have it at last,” said Cheryl Ault-Barker, Principal of P.S. 81. “It is beyond all our expectations and will be the engine of our literacy initiatives. Our children will now read to lead and be able to find their futures on the shelves in this room.”

“Our work with Change for Kids and P.S. 81 aligns with HarperCollins’ philanthropic goals of supporting learning, reading and writing – as well as the community,” said Erin Crum, vice president of Corporate Communications for HarperCollins. “We are proud of our employees for their incredible teamwork, creativity, and generosity in giving back to their community and inspiring a new generation of readers.”

HarperCollins completed this project through its support of Change for Kids (CFK), which provides New York City schools with literacy, arts, health, and other essential resources that set students on the path to a brighter future. The company is a part of the “Change Team” at P.S. 81, where the majority of the school’s 383 students reside in temporary housing. The school is surrounded by five public shelters, 59% of the residents in the nearby community are unemployed, and 93% of the students receive a free or reduced lunch. The Change Team at each Change for Kids school provides not only financial support, but works with the school to volunteer and connect with their students.

As a member of the P.S. 81 Change Team, HarperCollins sponsors the Story Pirates Creative Writing and Literacy Tutoring programs for the 2014-2015 school year, and has just signed on to continue their literacy support in the 2015-2016 school year.

About HarperCollins
HarperCollins Publishers is the second largest consumer book publisher in the world, with operations in 18 countries. With nearly two hundred years of history and more than 65 unique imprints around the world, HarperCollins publishes approximately 10,000 new books every year, in over 30 languages, and has a print and digital catalog of more than 200,000 titles. Writing across dozens of genres, HarperCollins authors include winners of the Nobel Prize, the Pulitzer Prize, the National Book Award, the Newbery and Caldecott Medals and the Man Booker Prize. HarperCollins, headquartered in New York, is a subsidiary of News Corp (NASDAQ: NWS, NWSA; ASX: NWS, NWSLV) and can be visited online at corporate.HC.com.

About Change for Kids
One school at a time, Change for Kids (CFK) rallies communities to provide a broad range of essential educational opportunities at under-resourced public elementary schools. By creating inspiring learning environments at our partner schools, CFK enables students to discover their unique strengths and develop the confidence to achieve. CFK is a registered 501(c)3 nonprofit organization. www.changeforkids.org.

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