By Megan Wehring

KYLE — In an effort to improve literacy skills in the community, the Kyle Correctional Center is conducting its first service project in a series this month with book drives.

The projects are in conjunction with the 40th anniversary of the facility’s operator Management & Training Corporation (MTC). Other projects for each quarter will focus on hunger, fighting mental illness and helping ease the pain caused by homelessness.

The first round of books was donated to the Texas Juvenile Justice Department in San Antonio on March 10. Warden Bernadette Rodriguez said the literacy program is designed for all generations, including juveniles.

“It was impactful to the youths because they got to see and hear about somebody that could relate to them,” Rodriguez said. “Literacy, reading and writing is very important in their life whether it is applying for a job or signing a contract for a house or an apartment.”

Rodriguez added that the juveniles enjoyed hearing the recorded testimonials of adult inmates because they were in the shoes once before.

The inmates at the Kyle facility are also recording voice-recorded skits, poems and short stories that will be donated to the Philomena Retirement Home in Kyle. Books will also be donated to the retirement home and Tom Green Elementary School in Buda next week.