oak hill — Kim Massey, extension librarian at the headquarters of the Fayette County Public Library, got a nice surprise this week.

Within hours of receiving notice of approval of the FCPL’s grant application submitted to West Virginia American Water for its pilot Bottle Filling Station Grant Program, a delivery was made to the library at 611 Main Street.

“Someone told me I had a delivery and I was thinking, ‘I haven’t ordered anything.’ I went to meet the gentleman and he was delivering the bottle filling station,” she said Monday.

“I’m tickled pink,” Massey, who wrote the grant application, said. “I got the notice and I opened it up and I got so excited (and) then the guy came today and said I had a delivery!”

The bottle filling station pilot program is being offered by West Virginia American in an effort to reduce single-use plastic bottles and encourage hydration and healthy living among users, the company said in a press release.

“West Virginia American Water is proud to begin this annual grant program with the goal of increasing bottle filling stations throughout our service area,” said Rob Burton, WVAW president. “This program is another way we can educate our communities on the benefits of tap water, and in particular, teach our young people the value of sound health and environmental practices.”

Of the 10 recipients, the local library was one of two Southern West Virginia entities chosen to receive a station. Princeton’s Mercer Elementary School also was awarded a station.

A committee of WVAW employees reviewed and selected 10 organizations in the company’s service area from more than 90 applications. The other recipients are located in Cabell, Kanawha, Lewis and Putnam counties.

“We were extremely pleased with the number of applications we received, prompting us to double the amount of stations we initially planned to award this year,” Burton said in the release. “The demand demonstrates the community’s desire to provide health-conscious, environmentally friendly tap water options which result in less plastic waste and better health outcomes.”

Massey said the station will be a boon to the library. “We’re offering a lot more programs now and we don’t have a water fountain. Our patrons will be able to bring their refillable bottles and have fresh water now. We’d like to really thank West Virginia American Water for this program.”

The bottle filling station will be located on the main floor of the Oak Hill Public Library, she said.

“We are tickled for our patrons. This will be so much more convenient for them.”

As far as timing on the installation of the filling station is concerned, Massey said, “We’ll get it in as soon as possible.”

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