Books Are Wings receives 1,600 books from BankRI spring drive

BANK RHODE ISLAND collected 1,618 books for Pawtucket-based Books Are Wings during its annual spring book drive. / COURTESY BANK RHODE ISLAND

PROVIDENCE – Bank Rhode Island collected 1,618 books for Pawtucket-based nonprofit Books Are Wings during its abbreviated spring drive to help support new summer learning efforts in light of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The drive launched March 2 at all 20 branches and its Lincoln-based operations center, BankRI said, but the pandemic cut short the normally monthlong drive. The books have been transported to Books Are Wings, and they will be quarantined and then sorted by volunteers for distribution, BankRI said.

The nonprofit will use the books to support literacy efforts in high-need communities, BankRI said. In a statement, BankRI CEO and President Mark J. Meiklejohn said it is “tremendous” the number of books that have been donated this year given the circumstances presented by the current health crisis.

“Although these remain challenging times, we’re happy to be able to support Books Are Wings and the creative ways they’re helping kids read during the summer,” Meiklejohn said.

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James Bessette is the PBN special projects editor, and also covers the nonprofit and education sectors. You may reach him at You may also follow him on Twitter at @James_Bessette.

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