LMU-DCOM student donates books to HANDS program

Published 5:00 am Monday, February 7, 2022

LMU-DCOM student David Horvath made a generous donation to the Bell County Health Department HANDS program.

The Health Access Nurturing Development Services (HANDS) program supports parents by providing prenatal care, nutrition, and information to help parents be successful throughout their journey. Holly Dixon, HANDS manager at the Bell County Health Department, says they are like a support system to parents.

“We link them up with resources as needed and talk about healthy pregnancies and getting the parents prepared,” Dixon said.

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While this program is usually a home visitation program, due to covid it is currently online. Anyone can be part of this program and will get support up until around age two or three. This program also helps with the child’s development. “We talk to every family about reading with their baby and we start talking about it prenatally. About how important it is to help build their vocabulary, the more words that they hear throughout infancy and toddlerhood helps increase their vocabulary later in life,” Dixon said.

Horvath says that he grew up as a reader and always enjoyed reading.

“I always wanted to figure out a way to help other kids enjoy reading as well. I know sometimes kids can’t afford or don’t have access to reading. I thought this was a way to give back to my community,” he said.

Horvath is currently a student at the Debusk College of Osteopathic Medicine (DCOM) studying to become a doctor. “It’s kind of something I hope to do one day as a doctor. I hope to set up kind of like a bookshelf much like the HANDS program does,” he said.

Horvath donated roughly 2,250 books to the HANDS program. He plans on getting more donations and hopes to continue this donation process.

“I started over summer break and I spent almost all of Christmas break gathering more books so I guess it took seven or six months,” Horvath said.

The HANDS program is always accepting donations of all kinds: monetary, books, baby items, diapers, wipes and bottles. Dixon says a big need in this area is car seats.