Margaret McNamara knew there was something special about giving children the power to make choices. But she didn't know her simple act of kindness—bringing a few used books to four boys she was tutoring—would start a reading revolution. That was more than four decades ago.
When the former teacher told the children, they could choose a book to keep as their own, their delight, and astonishment led her to conclude that they, and other children, had never known the excitement of owning a brand new book. She knew it was extremely important to get more books into the hands of children who were learning to read but didn't have the resources. She knew it was time to act.
Our impact is to see magic happen when you give books to chldren: eyes sparkle, smiles emerge, and imagination comes alive. That's the mission embraced by RIF across the county-to motivate chldren to have a lifelong, life-chainging love of reading. This ignites a hunger for knowledge and a passion for learning.
Reading Is Fundamental has a rich history in supporting children nationally and locally across the United States by providing free books to Title 1 schools to help to build home libraries.
It is difficult for many of us to imagine not having the resources to obtain books, but this is the case with so many children RIFSoCal serves. RIFSoCal books are often the first book in the home, becoming the beginning of a personal home library.
With service to Los Angeles County’s most resource-deprived children since 1972, RIFSoCal has witnessed thousands of life-changing moments and received innumerable testimonials from grateful participants. We are now into our second and third generation of RIFSoCal “kids.”
RIFSoCal will build the personal libraries of up to 100,000 children in the Greater Los Angeles area in the 2013 -2014 program year, distributing over 300,000 new books of choice at more than 300 sites, including Title I public and parochial schools, Head Start programs, and community-based organizations.
RIFSoCal volunteers help our schools conduct three Motivational Reading Events annually in one of our 300 sites, distributing over 300,000 new books to 100,000 children. Participating sites includeTitle I elementary schools, Head Start programs, and a variety of community service programs. A book event can be as simple as a volunteer reading to a group of children or as complex as a festival celebrating a particular culture or holiday in an elaborately decorated auditorium with thematic activities. At the end of every RIFSoCal book event, each child gets to CHOOSE a brand new book to keep and share with their families, compelling them to read for pleasure.
As President of RIFSoCal, Alva's committment to this program is strong and followed by a Board is sensitive to the needs of literacy in our country and the greater Los Angeles and Orange County areas, we will thrive and continue to make the magic happen!
Join us, donate, and participate!
To find out more about RIFSoCal check us out at http://rifsocal.org/