I hope you enjoyed my post on Compassion in my last post. Today, we will focus on a charity that promotes literacy here in the U.S. Let’s take a sneak peak at this charity’s accomplishments.
1. This charity is endorsed by the American Academy of Pediatrics and the National Association of Pediatric Nurse Practitioners.
2. In 2013, the charity was awarded the David M. Rubenstein Prize by the Library of Congress, which is a multi-million dollar fund donated by the namesake to promote literacy.
3. Their literacy partner is the American Academy of Family Physicians.
Interesting factoids, aren’t they? So, without further ado, this week’s Literacy Advocate is…
Reach Out & Read
Photo from the Reach Out & Read Website
Reach Out & Read partners with doctors’ offices across the country with a three part model.
• In the waiting room, the doctors’ offices have a volunteer who reads out loud to the children, making reading and story time fun, which in turn creates a good example for the families.
• The doctors in the program then teach low-income families about the importance of reading to their children and how it correlates to educational benefits.
• Finally, at each check-up, the doctor provides an age-appropriate book to the child.
Here’s a breakdown of the stats. Reach Out & Read currently has a team of 20,000 doctors and nurses who receive no pay for their work in the program. The literacy interventions are targeted for families with children aged 6 months to 5 years, because these are the years that are the most crucial to creating a foundation for language learning and on average a child from a low-income family will have heard 30 million less words by the age of three than their more affluent peers which directly correlates to a child’s educational development.
To date, the charity currently provides healthcare and literacy advocacy to 4.5 million families across every state in the U.S. That’s 900 families for every 1 doctors’ office in the program. The books they donate to the families can come in as many as 14 languages for those who are immigrants and for early language learning benefits.
So, you might be wondering:
Is there a Reach Out & Read facility near me? You can find that out here!
How can I volunteer? You can donate books or you can become a waiting room reader.
For those of you who would like to know more about the organization, they have a blog! They also have a Facebook page. And a Twitter account. They even have an Instagram! I encourage you to check them out.
Do you have a literacy program like Reach Out & Read in your area? Let me know in the comments below!