Thursday, May 30, 2013

Science Textbooks Reach University in Ghana

A special thank you to Sinauer Associates, Inc. for their donation of thousands of dollars in textbooks to Cape Coast University in Ghana.

The books were donated this spring and have now arrived at the university’s library.

The textbooks cover a wide variety of subjects in biology, psychology, and neuroscience.

About Sinauer Associates

Sinauer Associates, Inc., publishers of college-level textbooks and educational multimedia in biology, psychology, neuroscience, and allied disciplines, was founded in June of 1969 by Andrew D. Sinauer.

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Give Your Books a New Home! Whole Foods Market in Hadley and Reader to Reader Team Up For Literacy

• Book drive runs June 3-9, collecting at Whole Foods Market in Hadley, MA.
• New or gently used books for grades K-5 are the strongest need; also accepting books for grades 6-12.

**For immediate release**

May 9, 2013

HADLEY, MASS -- If your kids have outgrown their books, give them a new home! Whole Foods Market in Hadley is holding a book drive to support Reader to Reader, a literacy nonprofit based in Amherst that donates new and gently used books to under-resourced schools and libraries across the country.

The book drive will run June 3-9. You can bring your new and gently used books for grades K-12 to the Hadley Whole Foods Market. There is a strong need for K-5 books as well as any nonfiction, particularly in the sciences. If you have several boxes or need assistance, please call Reader to Reader’s office at 413-658-5572 to set up a time to drop them off.

The need is great. According to the Handbook of Early Literacy Research, in middle-income neighborhoods the ratio of age-appropriate books per child is 13 to 1. In low-income neighborhoods the ratio falls dramatically to 1 book for every 300 children.

“We are delighted to be partnering with Whole Foods Market to get more books in the hands of children,” says Reader to Reader’s executive director David Mazor. “So many communities across the country are in desperate need of books.”

Reader to Reader staff will be onsite at Whole Foods Market on Wednesday June 5, 2:30PM-5PM to answer your questions about the organization and its programs.

About Reader to Reader
Reader to Reader, Inc. is dedicated to expanding literacy and learning opportunities for the nation's most chronically underserved and vulnerable communities, including inner-city schools, Native American reservations, and poor rural towns. Learn more at their website:

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Leading Book Discussions on the Navajo Nation

Amherst College students serving as reading mentors in Reader to Reader’s Navajo Mentoring Program led book discussions at St. Michael Indian School in St. Michaels, Arizona.

With the guidance of Reader to Reader's Navajo Outreach Coordinator, Ophelia Hu, mentors and students discussed Elie Wiesel’s holocaust novel Night.

Reader to Reader staff and the four college students are spending nine days touring the Navajo and Hopi reservations where they are visiting schools that receive book donations and literacy programs from Reader to Reader.

Reader to Reader’s Navajo Outreach Coordinator is funded through the generous support of the Fordham Street Foundation, the Hiatt Family Foundation, and Jean and Lynn Miller.

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

15,000 Books Arrive on Navajo Nation

A huge truck rumbled up as 15,000 books completed a 5-day journey across the country to the Navajo Nation in Arizona.

The books will be distributed to schools, libraries, Boys & Girls Clubs, Head Start Programs and other areas of need across the 27,000 square-mile Navajo and Hopi reservations.

Reader to Reader staff and four Amherst College students flew to Albuquerque and drove three hours to Window Rock, Arizona to help unload the truck and deliver some of the books. The truck was driven by Navajo Nation Library officials that flew to Massachusetts to pick up the books.

The college students work during the school year in Reader to Reader’s Navajo Mentoring Program and are spending a week working with students at St. Michael Indian School in St. Michaels, Arizona.

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Reader To Reader Reaches 100,000 Book Goal for Navajo Book Drive

AMHERST, MA--15,000 books are on the their way to Arizona and New Mexico. Reader To Reader, an Amherst-based nonprofit literacy organization, has reached its goal of donating 100,000 to the Navajo Nation Library located on the Navajo reservation in Window Rock, Arizona.

The book drive was launched in July of 2009 and ever since then Navajo Nation Library officials have traveled to Massachusetts twice a year to drive a large U-Haul truck full of books back to the reservation.

Reader to Reader staff and volunteers take six months collecting, sorting and boxing up books for each shipment. It takes the Navajo officials five days to drive back to Arizona spending twelve hours a day behind the wheel.

When the truck gets to Arizona it will deliver books to schools, community centers, a correctional facility, Head Start programs, Boys & Girls Clubs, and add thousands of new books to the Navajo Nation Library. It will also deliver some of the books to schools on the Hopi reservation.

“Everyone is very excited to have met our goal,” David Mazor, founder and executive director of Reader to Reader says. “It’s taken four years and there have been lots of wild things happen along the way, including flat tires and driving through Hurricane Sandy.

Last fall’s shipment was loaded on the day Hurricane Sandy hit and the truck had to shelter for the night in Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania due to a curfew. Monday’s shipment was on a decidedly sunnier day. The need for books is profound, as there are no book stores on the reservation and the Navajo Nation and its small branch library are the sole libraries for the entire 27,000 square-mile Navajo Nation. The branch library was completely stocked with books donated by Reader to Reader.

David Mazor, staff person Kathryn Libby, and four Amherst College students are flying to Arizona on Friday where they will meet the bus and help with the unloading and delivery.

Even with the latest shipment of 15,000 books and a batch of refurbished computers, Mazor says the book drive is far from over. Now that Reader to Reader has reached 100,000 books the new goal is 200,000 books.

“Irving Nelson, director of the Navajo Nation Library, and I really enjoy working together and we both want to keep it going,” Mazor says. “We are grateful to everyone that has donated because without them it would not have been possible.”

People interested in donating book can email or call 413-256-8595.

Thursday, May 9, 2013

Hooray for East Hartford Rotary!

A special thank you to the East Hartford Rotary in East Hartford, Connecticut for their successful “Buck in a Book” book drive that collected 400 books and fundraised $400 in support of Reader to Reader literacy programs.

East Hartford Rotary’s president Sheryl O'Connor presented the books and a check for the funds at their weekly Rotary luncheon.

The “Buck in a Book” program helps Reader to Reader gather the resources needed for donation in low-income communities. In addition, it helps pay for classroom supplies and classroom sets of books.

Thank you Sheryl and all the members of the East Hartford Rotary for helping us launch this new program.

Friday, May 3, 2013

Congratulations, Kat!

Congratulations to Kat Libby for being named a finalist in the Massachusetts Nonprofit Network’s 2013 Young Professional Award! Kat is one of four finalists among a large pool of candidates from nonprofits across the state.

Kat brings ingenuity, innovation and persistence to our organization, and we are very pleased that she is receiving such recognition for her work at Reader to Reader.

Excellence Award winners will be announced at MNN’s Nonprofit Awareness Day celebration on June 10th. A full list of the finalists is available here. Hooray for Kat!