The Assistance League has been named a 2013 National Make a Difference Day Award honoree in recognition of its member volunteers collecting 113,101 books in a nationwide 94-chapter drive.

The Assistance League project was selected from thousands of efforts that took place on Make a Difference Day 2012, the nation’s largest single day of volunteering sponsored by USA WEEKEND Magazine in partnership with Points of Light and supported by Newman’s Own.

Locally, the Assistance League of Santa Barbara participated in the National Children’s Book Drive by collecting more than 400 books for donation to Girls Inc.

Together, with 93 other chapters of Assistance League, these local efforts led to selecting Assistance League as one of 10 national honorees.

More than 21,500 Assistance League member and community volunteers were inspired to participate in this event, with the project focused on children’s literacy since reading is a critical element in every youngster’s development.

“Locally, approximately 200 volunteers contributed time and books to make this event a success,” said Susan Engles, public relations chairwoman for the Assistance League of Santa Barbara. “By providing books to those in need, Assistance League continues to make a difference in our community.”

The Assistance League was recognized at a luncheon in Washington, D.C., in late April at which time it received a $10,000 donation from Newman’s Own and was spotlighted in the April 19-21 issue of USA WEEKEND Magazine. In presenting the award, CBS News congressional correspondent Nancy Cordes said, “In just one day, Assistance League put the gift of a new, magical world into some of America’s smallest hands.”

More information about Assistance League’s Make a Difference Day success may be found by clicking here, with specifics on Assistance League of Santa Barbara available by clicking here.

— Susan Engles is the public relations chairwoman for the Assistance League of Santa Barbara.