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franklin county times

Reading helps calm clinic's young patients

By Staff
READ TO ME  Rosie Dixon reads to 3-year-old Sunrise Nicole Thompson, in the foreground, while Mary Adams reads to 5-year-old Jacob Robinson at Greater Meridian Health Clinic. Photo by Marianne Todd/The Meridian Star
By Marianne Todd/The Meridian Star
March 25, 2001
Sunrise Thompson plops down on Rosie Dixon's lap and sticks a finger in her mouth as the two begin to read.
The pair is comfortable sitting in the waiting room at Greater Meridian Health Clinic. Sunrise is unaware of the goings on around her. Her attention is on the book and Dixon, the woman whom Sunrise and other small children refer affectionately to as "grandmother."
Dixon has been reading to children in the pediatric department at the Davis Street Clinic for more than a year.
Mary Adams also volunteers her time as a foster grandparent, reading to the children who gather around her. The two women cover 40 hours of reading time a week; Adams reads in the morning, Dixon in the afternoon.
As a nurse director, Sharon Hamler sees the benefits of the women's volunteer work firsthand.
Dixon and Adams are also a comfort to parents who sometimes bring two or three children at a time to the pediatric department.
Marianne Todd is a staff writer for The Meridian Star. E-mail her at mtodd@themeridianstar.com.