The goal of the CCLR is to provide reading opportunities to our community. Hattiesburg is a small college town in south central Mississippi with a poverty rate of 37% and a high school drop out rate of 40%. The Council was formed in 2015 with a mission to foster a culture of reading, but this was quickly narrowed to two important activities: providing books for children to own, and educating parents on the importance of reading to very young children. To this end we look for opportunities where we can talk to parents and caregivers about the benefits of reading aloud to children, provide literacy activities for children, and give them high-quality books to take home. So far we have given away more than 10,000 books.