Supporting Pediatric Literacy in Central Texas

For over 30 years, BookSpring has been supporting the unique relationship between parents and medical providers to develop critical early reading skills in very young children from birth through age 6. Through longstanding partnerships with local healthcare providers, very low income children enter kindergarten better prepared to succeed, with larger vocabularies and stronger language skills. Literacy research shows not only improved educational outcomes from pediatric literacy interventions, but improved health outcomes as well.

The Program

  • Providers agree to make literacy a standard part of a well-child check-up.
  • BookSpring provides a steady stream of books matched to the provider’s patients’ needs.
  • Children will be given a choice of language and developmentally appropriate books.
  • Physicians encourage parents to take the time to read to their children and distribute materials to motivate family reading in the home.
  • Families will learn how sharing books increases a child’s school readiness, bringing the child to the same level of readiness as their peers.
  • Parents provide feedback to both BookSpring and Providers about their reading attitudes, behaviors, and abilities to maintain program quality.

Our ReadWell program is currently restricted to clinics that serve low-income populations of at least 50% low-income in Central Texas, that is families who are on CHiP, Medicaid, WIC, or no insurance at all. This reflects a deep cost discount due to the generous philanthropic support of many generous individuals and agencies such as United Way of Greater Austin and The St. David’s Foundation. Each year over 20,000 children are served by ReadWell. These children gain the lifelong benefits of being read aloud to and building a home library from birth.

If you are pregnant or a family member seeking direct health and wellness services, please reach out to Travis County Healthy Families or ATX Connect.

Partner With Us

BookSpring is currently taking applications and renewals for the ReadWell program.  Please follow the link below.  You will need to assure that your clinic is eligible and decide how many and what types of books you would like to receive for them, and if you want monthly or quarterly deliveries.  Current fees charged to participating providers are only 79 cents per well-child exam, including books and supporting materials for caregivers delivered to your site.  You can apply or make a payment through this link:

Open Book

If your practice cannot afford our nominal program fees, you may still sign up to participate in our Open Book program, through which free books can be delivered to your clinic, but only if and when they are available. Please know that English and Spanish board books that are appropriate for birth through age 5 are rarely in our surplus inventory. Your contribution through our nominal program fees helps us leverage ongoing local philanthropic dollars to make sure your patients always get the books they need at home through all well-child and/or development screening visits.

To find out more, contact rx@bookspring.org or (512) 472-1791 x 110.

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