Organizations we think you should know more about
In recognition of National March into Literacy Month, A Better Community shines their spotlight on three organizations which take pride in promoting literacy and the imagination that can be fostered through reading.
Many of us can think back to our favorite childhood book - some of us can even recall getting our first brand new book. Unfortunately, this is not the case in low-income families across America. Sadly, in these neighborhoods, the ratio of books is ONE age-appropriate book for every 300 children. Statistics show that over 80% of preschool and after-school programs serving children from low-income families have no age-appropriate books for their children. First Book provides an ongoing supply of new books to children participating in community-based mentoring, tutoring, and family literacy programs. More than half of the children -- 55% -- reported having an increased interest in reading. Additionally, the number of young people demonstrating a "high interest in reading" nearly tripled (increasing from 23% to 61%) after receiving books from First Book. First Book offers many volunteer opportunities such as donating books or book distribution, to serving on an advisory board. For more information about the many ways you can help spread the power of books and reading, please visit www.firstbook.org. What better way to celebrate National March into Literacy month than to help our children build their education?
American Library Association
"The best reading, for the largest number, at the least cost." This is the motto of the American Library Association (ALA), established in 1876. The ALA's mission is to provide leadership for the development, promotion, and improvement of library and information services and the profession of librarianship in order to enhance learning and ensure access to information for all. The ALA is committed to five key action areas as guiding principles for directing the Association's energies and resources: Diversity, Equity of Access, Education and Continuous Learning, Intellectual Freedom, and 21st Century Literacy. To learn more about ALA, log onto www.ALA.org.
Reading is Fundamental
Reading Is Fundamental (RIF) is the largest children's literacy nonprofit in the United States. RIF prepares and motivates children to read by delivering free books and literacy resources to those children and families who need them most. Inspiring children to be lifelong readers through the power of choice, RIF provides new, free books for children to choose from and make their own. The seeds of inspiration in these books have motivated children to follow their dreams and achieve their potential. Yes, it seems incredible for a book to launch a life, but it happens every day as hungry, inquisitive young minds reach out and grab hold of the new people, places, and ideas that books bring them.
Planting seeds of inspiration in our nation's most vulnerable children is what RIF and a network of more than 400,000 volunteers do. Whether in schools, homeless shelters, or community centers--wherever you find children--RIF volunteers spend countless hours distributing books, staging reading motivation activities, and promoting the importance of literacy in their communities. In the spirit of March into Literacy Month, log onto www.RIF.org.