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Reading Is Fundamental

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The Need

Through RIF, BookSpring serves over 21,000 children in Austin each year on AISD campuses, in local Head Start centers, and in other child development centers.

Children who do not have access to books and do not read regularly are among the most vulnerable Americans. They are at risk for educational failure.

  • 61 percent of low-income families have no age-appropriate books at all in their homes for their children. (Reading Literacy in the United States: Findings from the IEA Reading Literacy Study. (1996).)
  • Students who read more frequently for fun have higher reading proficiency scores than those who read less frequently.
  • The average child growing up in a middle class family has been exposed to 1,000 to 1,700 hours of one-on-one picture book reading. The average child growing up in a low-income family, has only been exposed to 25 hours of one-on-one reading. (McQuillan, J. (1998). The Literacy Crisis: False Claims, Real Solutions. Heinemann.)

Our Approach

Reading Is FUNdamental provides “forever books” to Austin area children.

  • Children have the opportunity to choose and keep three books per year at no cost to them or their family.
  • Dozens of books are displayed, allowing children to explore their interests and make their own choices
  • Librarians, teachers, and volunteers motivate children to read with exciting literacy-related activities at each RIF event.

Impact

Last year the school based RIF ( www.rif.org ) programs in Austin  put over 50,000 brand new books into the hands of children who might not otherwise have books of their own.

Make It Happen

What Can You Do?

Would you like to dress up in costume, read to Austin’s school kids or lead a class activity about dinosaurs or camping out? You can make a difference by volunteering at an elementary or pre-school RIF day! Motivate young kids to read by sharing your love of books!

  • Volunteer for RIF Days - Make reading fun for kids in an elementary school class.
  • Help out at a Preschool - Read aloud to a group of children. Lead a literacy activity.
  • Inspire Young Parents - Show teen parents the benefits of reading to their children.

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