Grandparents Caring for Military Child Benefit from United Through Reading Program

September 9, 2022

Grandparents Day is Sunday, September 11, 2022. United Through Reading understands how much kids cherish their grandparents and vice versa. Military families often lean on grandparents during deployments and separations for help. This summer we met David and Charlotte Larkin, grandparents that were helping care for their five-year-old granddaughter, Ellie, while her Active Duty military parents worked

David and Charlotte were constantly looking for fun activities for Ellie in Colorado Springs. They wanted her to socialize, be stimulated, and get out of the house too! The Larkin’s had planned on visiting the library to stock up on books and cool off – but they didn’t expect all of the extras.

United Through Reading met Ellie and her grandparents at one of our “Storytime with a Servicemember” events at the Peterson Space Force library. Ellie sat on her grandparents’ lap as she listened to a Space Force Guardian read World of Reading: T.O.T.S. Panda Excess. In the story, Pip and Freddy must deliver a Panda so dangerously cute that a single look will make it impossible to say goodbye.

A group of about 20 kids also listened in and then joined the librarian for a a singing and dancing session. Ellie’s grandparents appreciated the activity as the temperature was scorching that day, and indoor exercise was just right for the trio. Charlotte said, “this whole day was awesome!”

Next, Ellie pulled her grandparents swiftly into the craft room. There she chose a yellow piece of construction paper to create her own panda. The Larkins stood by as she cut, glued, and painted in a state of pure joy. Ellie was incredibly proud when she showed her prized panda to her grandparents and new friends.

As the storytime event wrapped up, Ellie was given a copy of World of Reading: T.O.T.S. Panda Excess to take home! This led to her returning to where the day started – on her grandparents’ lap but this time at home. She wanted them to reread it along with a handful of other books to prepare her for kindergarten.

David Larkin told us he felt so at home because he is a retired librarian. He said, “reading improves their imagination. And is the basis for new ideas the rest of their life.”

The Larkins are grateful United Through Reading was there while caring for Ellie.

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