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The chaplains’ office at Camp Victory in Baghdad is seeking donations of Arabic books for a book drive for Iraqi children.

School supplies, clothes, shoes, and other items already have been donated by Americans to local Iraqi families as part of a program sponsored by the chaplains’ office called Hearts for Baghdad.

Last month, an Arabic book drive was initiated called Books for Baghdad, according to a news release issued Sunday by Multi-National Corps–Iraq.The program seeks to strengthen cultural connections through reading, according to Marine 1st Lt. Melvin Burch, MNCI C-3 battle captain.“Many of the Iraqi families we support live nearby in war-torn neighborhoods and do not have or cannot afford these items,” he said.“We have tons of stuff coming in daily for Hearts of Baghdad, but we now need books for Books for Baghdad,” Burch said.Burch’s son’s high school raised $580, which was used to purchase the program’s first 79 books.Navy Lt. Cmdr. Andrew Wade, chaplain of Multi-National Corps– Iraq Joint Operations Center, said the “outstanding program is in place to help the future of Iraq.”

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