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Airman and Family Services Flight and "a special guest" from the Walt Disney Company to give out free books to children

There will be about 2,300 books that a "secret" special representative from the Walt Disney Company will give out to  Los Angeles Air Force Base children July 12 during the Books on Bases event from 2-4 p.m. at the Fort MacArthur Community Center in San Pedro. Register your children today at www.tinyurl.com.DisneyBOB (Courtesy photo: 61st Force Support Squadron's Airman and Family Services Flight)

A "special guest" from the Walt Disney Company will give out more than 2,300 free books to Los Angeles Air Force Base children July 12 during the Books on Bases event from 2-4 p.m. at the Fort MacArthur Community Center in San Pedro. Register your children today at www.tinyurl.com.DisneyBOB (U.S. Air Force photo / Joseph Juarez)

LOS ANGELES AIR FORCE BASE, Calif. -- How good is it to step into a bookstore, smell the scent of new books, and leaf through the first few pages to see what the book is about? But in an age of fast-pace technological advancements, and when more book stores are downsizing and closing, children today have less of an opportunity to partake in that wonderful bookstore experience.

The Airman and Family Services Flight at Los Angeles Air Force Base keeps the new book experience going when more than 2,300 books will be given away by "a special guest" in San Pedro, July 12 from 2-4 p.m.

Five hundred U.S. military children of parents stationed at Los Angeles Air Force Base in El Segundo, Calif. who reside in base housing 20 miles away at Fort MacArthur in San Pedro will participate in Blue Star Families' Books on Bases program, coordinated with support from Disney and a group of Disney VoluntEARS. The event, including a surprise guest appearance, will engage military children and their families in art activities - such as making pirate swords, crowns and bookmarks. As families leave the Books on Bases event, each child will be given a reusable Blue Star Families tote bag full of read-along stories from Disney Publishing Worldwide and Disney plush toys.

"Military children make many sacrifices when parents serve in the military. They endure frequent moving and parent's deployment," said Patricia Brown, Airman and Family Services flight chief. "Getting lost in a book not only gives them a moral boost, but also develops imagination that supports them throughout their careers by having the ability to think out of the box."

Over the span of their school career, the average military child has likely attended six to nine different schools with at least two transitions in during high school. To put this in perspective, active duty military children move 2.4 times more frequently than their civilian friends. In addition, 42 percent of military families and their children have moved outside of the US as a result of military orders.

"Constantly changing schools, friends, teachers, and classroom curriculums are particularly challenging for both military children and their parents," said Blue Star Families Program Director Megan Glynn. "That's why Books on Bases is such a great program for military families. In addition to the proven educational advantages of reading to your child, it also has a calming effect and can help open up a dialogue between children and parents.  This increased communication provides military families with greater coping skills and helps ensures success."

Created in 2009, Blue Star Families' Books on Bases offers military kids a sense of continuity, safety, and belonging through the magic of reading. These events help military families spend quality time together, escape everyday stresses, and talk thoughtfully about home and life circumstances that might be difficult to discuss. Thanks to support from Disney, the Books on Bases has distributed more than 70,000 books to military children and their families at more than 35 bases at home and overseas, including installations in Alaska, Hawaii, England, Germany, Italy, South Korea and Japan.

To reserve your spot at this free event, register at www.tinyurl.com/DisneyBOB


About Blue Star Families
Blue Star Families is a national, nonprofit network of military families from all ranks and services, including guard and reserve, dedicated to supporting, connecting and empowering military families. With our partners, Blue Star Families hosts a robust array of morale and empowerment programs, including Books on Bases, Blue Star Museums, Operation Honor Corps, Blue Star Careers and Operation Appreciation. Blue Star Families also works directly with the Department of Defense and senior members of local, State and Federal government to bring the most important military family issues to light. Working in concert with fellow nonprofits, community advocates and public officials, Blue Star Families raises awareness of the challenges and strengths of military family life and works to make military life more sustainable. Our worldwide membership includes military spouses, children, parents and friends, as well as service members, veterans and civilians. For more information visit bluestarfamilies.org, facebook/bluestarfamilies or twitter.com/BlueStarFamily.


About The Walt Disney Company
The Walt Disney Company, together with its subsidiaries and affiliates, is a leading diversified international entertainment and media enterprise with five business segments: media networks, parks and resorts, studio entertainment, consumer products and interactive media. Being a good corporate citizen is a time-honored Disney tradition. Through contributions, collaborations with local organizations, in-kind gifts and volunteering, Disney helps to brighten the lives of kids and families in need and strengthen communities around the world. For more information visit, https://thewaltdisneycompany.com/citizenship or twitter.com/CitizenDisney.