For Immediate Release
Marks a national movement to raise awareness of the literacy crisis and highlights the value of book ownership and
reading aloud to children in improving literacy rates
Boston, MA, October 4, 2019 – National literacy and mentoring non-profit Read to a Child® today announced that Tuesday, October 8 is National Read to a Child Day. This day marks a national movement to raise awareness of the literacy crisis among low-income populations in the United States, as well as the immense value of providing books and reading aloud in the quest to improve literacy rates and to empower under-served children.
Beginning Saturday October 5th and running through Tuesday, October 8th adults across the country are encouraged to: put down the phone, pick up a book, find an appropriate child, read to them individually or in groups, and share the joy of the experience on social media using the hashtag #readtoachild. Prizes will be awarded by Read to a Child based upon various criteria, including: reading in the most unique spot; reading to the most children; and the funniest reading locations!
To spur the movement and to create even more awareness, celebrities, athletes, authors, teachers and politicians will read aloud to thousands of children in events hosted at urban elementary schools and libraries across the country.
On October 8th, Los Angeles Rams running back Todd Gurley and Scholastic author and Super Bowl Champion Malcolm Mitchell will visit two elementary schools in metro Los Angeles and will read aloud Malcolm’s book ‘The Magician’s Hat’ to more than 1,000 children. Thanks to book donations by Scholastic Book Club and other generous donors, all of the children will go home with a personal copy of ‘The Magician’s Hat,’ which highlights the importance of reading well in achieving your dreams.
In addition, students at the Esperanza Elementary in Los Angeles will each also receive a copy of ‘The Magician’s Hat’ and will be paired with caring adult volunteers from the downtown LA office of PwC, who will read one-on-one to each child.
Also on October 8th, Boston Mayor Martin J. Walsh and Boston Red Sox World Series champion and NESN TV sports analyst Manny Delcarmen will read at the Harvard-Kent Elementary in Charlestown. In the Metro Detroit city of Pontiac, MI, NASCAR Driver Garrett Smithley will conduct a read aloud event at the Herrington Elementary School and businessman and author Andy Gutman will read his acclaimed ‘Charlie the Caterpillar’ at the Whitman Elementary School. In Hartford CT, Renata Bowers will read her nationally awarded ‘Frieda B’ series at the Betances Elementary School.
“We are thankful for the support of Malcolm Mitchell, Todd Gurley, ROC Nation and all the authors, athletes and politicians who are supporting National Read to a Child Day and helping us raise awareness of the literacy crisis and steps we can take to end it,” said Read to a Child CEO Paul Lamoureux. “Current research shows that more than 75% of low-income fourth graders in the U.S. are not proficient readers. This troubling data directly impacts a child’s well-being and ultimately impacts the health of society as it is a major factor in decreasing likelihood of high school graduation and increasing likelihood of incarceration.”
“We are so excited to be a part of National Read to a Child Day,” said Malcolm Mitchell. “It is also an honor to team up once again with our friend, partner and Literacy Champion Todd Gurley to read to kids in the Los Angeles area. Reading is critical to the lives of kids, in school and beyond; and we want to thank everyone involved for giving us the opportunity to carry that message.”
About Read to a Child:
Read to a Child (readtoachild.org) is a national literacy and mentoring non-profit that inspires caring adults to read aloud regularly to under-served children to create better opportunities for the child’s future. Research shows that reading aloud to children is the single most important activity for eventual success in reading, a key factor for success in school, work, and life. When an adult reads to a child, both parties have a joyful, rewarding experience that instills a love of reading, improves literacy skills, and enhances a child’s self-confidence. Read to a Child’s Lunchtime Reading Program utilizes 2,000 volunteer mentors from the community and from 150 socially-minded organizations who read one-on-one to 1,500 at-risk elementary students in the greater metro areas of Boston, Detroit, Hartford, Los Angeles, and Miami.
Margaret Carr, Read to a Child