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Hands Across the Sea is dedicated
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of Eastern Caribbean children
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The Hands Literacy Award recognizes Eastern Caribbean schools, libraries, reading programs, and after-school youth centers that are leading the way in child literacy—and we reward them with U.S. $1,000 in books or literacy resources of their choice. We choose the winners on: creating, rejuvenating, and sustaining a lending library; commitment to literacy by staff; "ownership" of the library by children; literacy-focused initiatives such as a student librarian program, remedial reading, book clubs, and poetry and writing groups; library infrastructure improvements; involvement by community members.
Cayon High School's 30-person-strong Student Librarian team infuses the library with enthusiasm and professionalism. Bravo!

Cayon High School
The Power of Student Librarians. When Hands first began working with Cayon High School a few years ago to create a vibrant lending library at the school, a skeptic warned us: “The children at this high school are not interested in reading books.” Well, among many other powerful factors, a highly enthusiastic, deeply committed team of 30 Student Librarians has proven the naysayer wrong. Not only do students at this school want to read the 782 brand new, top-quality books (plus a Remedial Reading Toolkit) that Hands has sent, they are lined up outside the library door every morning! The new library at Cayon High School is a tremendous success story, and credit goes to a lot of places: Tammy Darby, Director of the Christophe Harbour Foundation, for believing in the school and providing generous, multiyear funding to Hands for new books; Principal Francil Morris and Librarian Mr. Charles, for their vision and commitment to child literacy; Assistant Librarians Ms. Browne and Ms. Hancock for steadily improving the library and collection; and Heidi Fagerberg, the Hands Literacy Link for St. Kitts and Nevis, who trained Cayon High School’s team of stellar Student Librarians. Can we give another huge shout-out to all of the Student Librarians? Awesoooooome.
ST. KITTS AND NEVIS Honorable Mentions: Charles E. Mills Secondary School (St. Kitts) • Charlestown Primary School (Nevis) • Jocelyn Liburd Primary School (Nevis) • Maurice Hillier Memorial Junior School (St. Kitts) • St. Paul's Primary School (St. Kitts)

Team effort (left to right): Mrs. Severin, Lisa Tomlinson, Principal Christopher Roberts, Lorraine Perry of Scotiabank Antigua, District Education Officer Emil Michael, and students.
Mary E. Piggott Primary School
A Beacon for Child Literacy. Recognizing a steady three-year development that has resulted in a first-class lending library, buy-in by teachers, and a whole lot of excited student readers, the Mary E. Pigott Primary School has been awarded the 2017-2018 Hands Literacy Award for Antigua. Deputy Principal Anthea Anthony has been a leading light in the library’s progress, along with colleagues Ms. Teague, Mrs. Severin, and Ms. Thwaites, and together they worked with Lisa Tomlinson, the Hands Literacy Link for Antigua, to create the school’s first-ever lending library. Generous, multiyear funding for the project, from new paint to the laying of a tiled floor, six sets of metal bookcases, and 1,176 brand new, top-quality books was supplied by the Scotiabank Community Program. With over 400 students drawn from a large rural catchment area, Mary E. Pigott Primary School is one of the largest primary (Grades K to 6) schools on Antigua. With a dedicated Library Team of teachers, the new lending library shines like a beacon for the advancement of child literacy.
ANTIGUA Honorable Mentions: All Saints Secondary School • Five Islands Primary School • Golden Grove Primary School • J. T. Ambrose Primary School • New Bethel SDA Academy • Potters Primary School