One of the simplest ways to support literacy is to give books to those in need. There are so many options when it comes to where to donate. You could support your local community by donating to your local libraries, schools, Goodwill, Salvation Army, and other local charities. You could also choose to donate to larger national and global charities such as Books for Africa, Better World Books, & Books for Soldiers. There is a need for books and literacy all over the world and right in your own backyard, it doesn’t matter where we do it, it just matters that we do it.
Host a Fundraiser or Book Drive
Recently I hosted a virtual book fundraiser for an organization called Connective Intervention Services. They provide free therapy and teacher services for families and babies ages 0-3 who are deemed to have 25% or more developmental or speech delay. Most of these children do not have access to literature and with the help of my family, friends, and community we were able to gift them $662 in free books! This is what I absolutely love about my job. It allows me to fill my commitment to do everything I can to end the literacy crisis. If you have a passion for a charity or non-profit that could from a benefit from a children’s book drive, I would LOVE to help!! Simply sign up here and tell me all about your vision and goal, we can make it a reality.
Support Organizations Reaching At-Risk Populations
The impact of illiteracy can be found across the globe but there are some communities impacted more than others. Statistics have shown that marginalized communities face high illiteracy rates such as low-income populations and emergent nations. If you’re driven to focus on illiteracy on a global scale, within these higher impacted populations is a good place to start. Luckily, there are organizations and non-profits working vigorously to increase literacy around the world. Though this isn’t an exhaustive list here are some of the literacy organizations and non-profits assisting at-risk populations: International Literacy Association, Reach Out and Read, Book Trust, First Book, Developments in Literacy, Make Way for Books, and Literacy for Incarcerated Teens. *Each organization is linked*
Educate Yourself on the Facts
Being able to address issues with illiteracy, first starts with educating yourself about the realities of the literacy crisis we face. More than 30 million adults in the US cannot read, write, or do basic math above a 3rd grade level. Children of parents with low literacy levels have a 72% chance of facing the same challenges. Why is lack of literacy such a big problem?! Low literacy levels are often correlated with lower-quality jobs, unemployment, poor health outcomes, poverty, crime, and dependence on social welfare or charity. What is the main cause illiteracy? Lack of exposure to books in the home, difficult or dangerous living situations, including poverty, addiction, or violence, or untreated learning disabilities such as dyslexia. Once we understand the problem, we can get a better idea of the solution and how we can help.
Celebrate Literacy in Your Own Life
Literacy is one of the greatest gifts in life and if you have been blessed with it there’s no reason not to nourish it and celebrate it. The amount of illiteracy across our nations is tragic but it’s important to view your own literacy as a tool that allows you to serve, support, and advocate for others. Reflecting on the significance of literacy in your own life can and will fuel the fire you needed for supporting the right to literacy for all.