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Leigha Maier enjoys reading and especially likes the Junie B. Jones series. The 9-year-old also wants other children to explore the wonders of reading.

Maier was one of the members of Girl Scout Troop 471 of Orangeburg who helped lug boxes containing a total of 1,146 books into Singleton Health Center on Jan. 12. The books will be for pediatric patients at the center to have for their very own.

"I have plenty of books. Some other kids don't have any books at all, and I want them to learn," said Maier, a third-grade student at Orangeburg Preparatory School.

Troop Leader Ashley Bruner said the troop has 30 girls, all of whom contributed to the effort to collect books for the center's youngest patients. The effort also included donations from other parents as well as students and teachers from the girls' schools, including OPS.

"I'm extremely proud of them and very thankful that they want to do this. I'm proud that they have a desire in their heart to benefit their community and worked so hard to collect the books," Bruner said.

Her two daughters, Trinity and Aubry, said they benefited from donating books to the children.

"I got the old books from my house that I didn't want to read anymore," Trinity said, adding that she was aware her other friends also had a lot of books to share.

"I knew all my friends had a lot of books. I figured if I gave them to the hospital, they would go to kids that didn't have any," said the 9-year-old OPS fourth grader.

Her younger sister, Aurbry, 8, said she felt "happy" about donating books for others to read.

"I have way too many of them. I like giving," she said, noting that her favorite author is Chris Van Allsburg, author of the 1985 children's book "The Polar Express" and "Jumanji," a 1981 children's fantasy picture book.

Zoe Wingard, 8, is a big fan of the Junie B. Jones book series. She also enjoys "Arthur," arguably the most popular aardvark in the world and subject of author Marc Brown's popular "Arthur" book series.

"I have plenty of books. Some other kids don't have any books at all, and I want them to learn," said Maier, a third-grade student at Orangeburg Preparatory School.

Troop Leader Ashley Bruner said the troop has 30 girls, all of whom contributed to the effort to collect books for the center's youngest patients. The effort also included donations from other parents as well as students and teachers from the girls' schools, including OPS.

"I'm extremely proud of them and very thankful that they want to do this. I'm proud that they have a desire in their heart to benefit their community and worked so hard to collect the books," Bruner said.

Her two daughters, Trinity and Aubry, said they benefited from donating books to the children.

"I got the old books from my house that I didn't want to read anymore," Trinity said, adding that she was aware her other friends also had a lot of books to share.

"I knew all my friends had a lot of books. I figured if I gave them to the hospital, they would go to kids that didn't have any," said the 9-year-old OPS fourth grader.

Her younger sister, Aurbry, 8, said she felt "happy" about donating books for others to read.

"I have way too many of them. I like giving," she said, noting that her favorite author is Chris Van Allsburg, author of the 1985 children's book "The Polar Express" and "Jumanji," a 1981 children's fantasy picture book.

Zoe Wingard, 8, is a big fan of the Junie B. Jones book series. She also enjoys "Arthur," arguably the most popular aardvark in the world and subject of author Marc Brown's popular "Arthur" book series.

Wingard said she wanted "to deliver books to other kids" so they could enjoy reading, too.

Her mother, Suzanne, is a volunteer troop leader with Girl Scout Troop 471. She said the gently used or brand new books were collected over a period of a month.

"We were asking friends and family, and we cleaned out our bookshelves. The girls did that personally, and then they went and asked their families and their classmates," Suzanne said.

She said Lauren Murphy, a physician assistant at Singleton Health Center, had expressed the need for children's books.

"Many children don't have books. She'd see mothers reading to children, who would be begging for them to take the book home to read again. That's what just sparked the love in our hearts,"