Union Co. jail volunteer collects books from strangers to give to inmates

Union Co. jail volunteer collects books from strangers to give to inmates

MONROE, NC (WBTV) - A Union County woman believes a good book can unlock opportunity.

“You can pick up a book, and there’s answers to everything,” Terri Myrick says.

Myrick’s sedan is stocked with paperbacks.

“A good hundred or so books in here so far,” she says.

Mysteries, fantasies, biographies – they’re all for Union County’s inmates.

“If you’re trying to expand your mind and your knowledge, I’m more than willing to help with that,” Myrick says.

Myrick volunteers at the jail, handing out books to people behind bars - books, she says, that are not in great shape.

“They’re worn, they’re torn, they can’t have them anymore.”

So, she’s meeting strangers in parking lots. Like one man Thursday, who wants his donation anonymous.

“They could always use a little bolster when it comes to resources,” that man says. “Especially good books.”

Myrick will motor more than 10 miles just for three or four books. She says when she then visits the jail, each time, each inmate takes a handful.

“To see other people share that same joy that I do, and literally flock to me like, ‘Give me a book, give me a book,’ that warmed my heart,” she says.

Myrick says the most-needed books in the jail right now are dictionaries, to help inmates with classes they are taking.

The Union County Sheriff’s Office told WBTV Thursday:

“The donated books are a welcome addition to our life skills program and offer a great benefit to inmates who take advantage of the opportunities afforded to them while they are incarcerated. We are grateful to those who have donated books and to the volunteers working under Safer Communities for their generosity and commitment to changing lives.”

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