Chris Long donates thousands of books to CCS through his new nonprofit

Chris Long and students
Chris Long and students
Published: May. 27, 2022 at 6:30 PM EDT
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CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (WVIR) -

One Charlottesville City school had a special guest Friday morning. Former NFL player Chris Long read to students and made a big donation at Burnley-Moran Elementary School.

Chris Long is opening the next chapter of his nonprofit EdZone. He’s trying to solve equity gaps in schools.

“It’s really gratifying to see the kids are excited about reading. They don’t know who I am, they’re too young and maybe some don’t watch football, but they love books. And I think it was really encouraging to see that because we want to get these books in their hands,” Long said.

Friday morning he donated 2,400 books to teachers at the school.

“The cool thing about this process is it’s not a one size fits all, like you ask the teachers, they curate with the titles of the books. The representation in the books is important,” Long said.

He also took the time to make personal connections with the students to impact education and its overall experience.

“It’s not just the books, we’re also trying to give these kids basic dignity to come in and be able to learn,” Long said.

Bianca Johnson coordinates family engagement for the CCS. Long notes her as a crucial part in the progress of his program with the schools.

“There’s so much strength in numbers and I love being able, for all of us, to come together and kind of make these things happen,” Johnson said.

They’ll continue working together and have more days just like this one.

“Literacy, especially after fourth grade, is so important to a kid’s learning and development,” Johnson said.

Long says he’ll be back in the fall to launch the next part of his nonprofit-- coat closets stocked with school supplies.

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