Monday, October 31, 2011

Reader to Reader Improves the Navajo Nation Library Collection

While visiting the Navajo Nation in Arizona and New Mexico, Reader to Reader founder David Mazor visited the Navajo Nation Library in Window Rock, Arizona.

The library serves the entire 27,000 square-mile Navajo Nation, and Reader to Reader’s multi-year book drive has already donated over 45,000 books and 30 computers to improve their collection.

“We are so grateful for all that Reader to Reader has done for us,” says Navajo Nation Library director Irving Nelson. “It is a great partnership. We work together to fill our areas of need, and that has greatly increased our library usage. Thanks to Reader to Reader we replaced the fiction section and greatly boosted our children’s section. They provided tens of thousands of books for all our nonfiction areas, as well.”

"The Navajo Nation Library is such an important resource," says David Mazor, "There are no book stores in the area, so without the library people would have very limited access to books. Irving Nelson does an amazing job of running the library and we are so pleased to be working with him."

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Expanding Literacy on the Navajo Nation

Reader to reader founder David Mazor is spending the week on the Navajo Nation in Arizona and New Mexico.

The purpose of the trip is to continue to develop the Navajo Mentoring Program, which works with Navajo elementary, middle, and high school students through a special program that links them with college student reading mentors for online book discussions.

The program also includes college advising for the high school students.

The week-long visit includes meetings with teachers, administrators, library officials, and students of all ages. Their insights help Reader to Reader hone our programs to the needs of Navajo students.

In addition to the mentoring program, Reader to Reader has made a commitment to refurbish the libraries at Navajo Elementary School, Navajo Pine Middle School, and St. Michael Indian School.

Over the past decade Reader to Reader has donated over $1,000,000 of books and computers to support literacy across the 27,000 square-mile Navajo Nation.

(Navajo Elementary principal Peggy Hotchkiss in front of her school in Navajo, New Mexico)

Monday, October 24, 2011

15 Computers for Warren Elementary

Fifteen computers and over 800 books are heading to the Warren Community Elementary School in West Warren, Massachusetts.

“Thanks to this wonderful donation we will be able to put a computer in each one of our classrooms,” said Ann Marie Lake, reading coach at Warren Community Elementary school. "We are so grateful for all Reader to Reader has done for us."

Reader to Reader’s computer donation program provides refurbished Dell Optiplex GX620s desktop computers with flat screen monitors for use in classrooms, libraries, and for building computer labs in the U.S. and around the world.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Bags of Books!

Students from the Care Center visited Reader to Reader and had a fun time filling bags full of books for themselves and their children.

Picking out books from our 10,000 book inventory is always a great way to get hooked on reading.

The Care Center is an alternative education program located in Holyoke, Massachusetts, for pregnant and parenting teens who have dropped out of high school. We are pleased to support their work by donating books and school supplies, and through their participation in our Athena Interactive literacy Program.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Computers on the Way to Hurricane Damaged Library

Three desktop computers are on their way to the West Hartford Library in West Hartford, Vermont.

The library sustained major flood damage from Hurricane Irene at the end of August. Reader to Reader pledged to replace their computers through our computer donation program, which provides Dell Optiplex GX620 computers that have been refurbished and are ready to run.

They will be great for library patrons to surf the internet!

Thursday, October 6, 2011

David Mazor Honored as Literacy Champion

Boston -- The Massachusetts Literacy Foundation, in partnership with Verizon’s Check Into Literacy Program, has named David Mazor, the founder of Amherst-based literacy organization Reader to Reader, as one of the 10 recipients of the 2011 Massachusetts Literacy Champion Awards program.

The awards were created in 2003 to identify, publicly recognize and support Massachusetts literacy providers who have shown exceptional commitment and results through their work in literacy education.

“I am honored to accept this award and believe it is an honor that is shared by everyone in our organization,” Mazor said. “”I am so pleased that our work as literacy advocates that create innovative and effective programs has been recognized by the The Massachusetts Literacy Foundation. We look forward to working harder than ever to raise literacy rates in Massachusetts and across the globe.”

Unlike many singular awards programs, the Literacy Champions Awards recognize multiple individuals, practices and programs. Each year, up to ten Literacy Champions are chosen from a competitive nomination pool to represent the diverse fields of literacy education in Massachusetts. They are classroom teachers, administrators and volunteers who work in urban and rural areas throughout Massachusetts. Literacy Champions collaborate throughout the year, serve as ambassadors for The Massachusetts Literacy Foundation and share their work in literacy with peers across the commonwealth.

“The new Literacy Champions will join a network of more than 50 literacy professionals who are among the best practitioners in their field,” said Carol Anne Conroy, president of the Massachusetts Literacy Foundation. “This program enables us not only to recognize the important work of these wonderful people who are dedicated to helping others, but gives us a vehicle to work together to share best practices.”

Award Winners Receive:
- A $2500 grant for program development.
- A $1000 grant for professional development.
- Statewide recognition as a Massachusetts Literacy Champion.
- An opportunity to collaborate as a group and share ideas.

Through its Check Into Literacy program, Verizon gives wireline phone customers the opportunity to donate $1 a month to literacy programs when they pay their Verizon bill. In Massachusetts, proceeds raised through the program are donated to the Massachusetts Literacy Foundation to promote the Literacy Champions’ efforts in local communities. Literacy Champions each receive $3500 in grants to support their work. This year, more than $74,000 was donated to the Massachusetts Literacy Foundation.

“We are proud to partner with the Massachusetts Literacy Foundation to recognize the efforts of literacy professionals across the state,” said Donna Cupelo, region president of Verizon New England. “People in this field work tirelessly to ensure people have the literacy skills they need to meet their education, career and life goals. Thanks to their efforts, we are building stronger communities here in Massachusetts.”

In addition, Massachusetts Literacy Foundation also will use funds for, a new website that will showcase the Literacy Champions winning practices, including strategies for effective literacy programs. In addition, the work of Literacy Champions will be featured in the Boston Herald’s literacy inserts, Massachusetts Reads and Succeeds.