Wynton and Dr. Ken Mask look to build libraries in the homes of hurricane Katrina victims

After Hurricane Katrina devastated New Orleans, Dr. Ken Mask who runs the non-profit “Books To You“ in New Orleans, turned to close friends and supporters, one being Wynton Marsalis to help restore the precious books that washed away in the Hurricane’s flood. Dr. Mask would like to do more than just restore books.

He and close friend and board member, Wynton, would like to see each home have a library of entertaining, educational and healing books which will uplift the spirits of the children, young adults, adults and elderly affected by this devastating event.

Dr. Mask states, “Two million books distributed to Hurricane victims over the next six months to a year is our goal. It is utopian and ideal, just what New Orleanians need right now.”
Wynton adds, “A library in the home gives each child an exciting and educational place to read. We are rebuilding the soul of those who are resilient and empowering them through books – a sacred tool.”

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  1. I have about 100 Kalmus mini scores, some are symphonies, some operas and assorted others. They are study guides I used in graduate school. I was going to donate them to Queens College, Aaron Copeland School because I got my degree from there. However, I thought before I do that I will try to find out if there is a need for them in any music libraries or schools in New Orleans. As a musician I feel a connection there. Please let me know if you would be able to guide me in trying to find someplace to donate these scores. Thanks.

    joni ernst on Sep 28th, 2008 at 6:51pm

  2. I would like to donate books for distribution. Where do we bring them?

    michele on Jan 21st, 2008 at 6:44pm

  3. Warren Easton Senior High School had 5 feet of flood water on the first floor in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina when the levees surrounding the City of New Orleans breached inundating 80 percent of the city. We are not providing any services to students at this moment. The school is closed and undergoing repairs but will open the second and third floors to students in August 2006. By January 2007, the first floor classrooms, the gymnasium, the cafeteria and the elevator will be fully operational.
    Our student body is about 800 students. We have regular, Special Education and English as a second language students. On August 15, 2006, we will be serving 800 students with diverse capabilities, backgrounds and learning styles.
    Warren Easton School Library had 13,190 books before Hurricane Katrina devastated the City of New Orleans. The school opened as a shelter during the hurricane. Unfortunately, the school was vandalized and many computers, books and materials were stolen. The library media center is located on the second floor of the building; water came through the windows damaging many books and materials. Water leaked from the third floor to the second floor damaging the History section of the library. At this time, we have about 6,000-8,000 books in our collection that can be salvaged. Before Hurricane Katrina we had magazines and a video collection but at this point we do not have any due to significant mold damage. The school was closed for several months and
    mold is everywhere. There is space in the current facility for new books. Books that have significant mold damage will be weeded and discarded. New shelving is needed to replace damaged shelves.
    Ceiling tiles fell on the circulation desk causing hardware and software damage to the computer that houses our library automation. In addition to books, to make our library functional and effective, we need magazines, books on tape for our hearing impaired students, computers and shelving.
    We are in the process of reconstructing the library. A new floor was installed. Mold damaged books will be weeded out of the collection. There is no insurance on the school building or the library collection. At this time, we have no monies to purchase new books to replace the mold damaged books. The priority of the library collection is to provide students with books that support and expand the school curriculum.
    We need to replace mold damaged books. Any books that you can donate to our school will be greatly appreciated.
    Nancy P. Hernandez, librarian
    Warren Easton Hi. School
    3019 Canal St.
    New Orleans, LA. 70119

    Nancy Hernandez on Jul 25th, 2006 at 5:39pm