To celebrate its 10th Anniversary, Judith’s Reading Room, a global literacy non-profit organization founded in 2010 kept good on its promise to bolster libraries it has donated over its 10 year history.
The idea is to instill in this unique population a love of reading. Why? Literacy is a significant protective factor for at-risk youth and is strongly correlated with reducing recidivism, according to Mindy Chipps, Juvenile Counselor. Harkins House serves over 100 youth per year. Last year the number totaled 122 with 80% returning to their community. She added, “Literacy is supported by everyone at Harkins House because books help kids returning to school by dropping barriers, heightening interest, and fostering the love of favorite topics.”
Chipps added that youth residing at Harkins House have the opportunity to actually read a book, unencumbered by stresses and strains from their often untenable home environments. Most stay 60 days and in that time, many come to see reading a book as a way to escape painful environments.
Shopping at Barnes & Noble for books for the donation to Harkins House in Portland, Oregon. David Leiber received book wish list from Harkins House and successfully found most of their request.
Judith’s Reading Room & Harkins House
The 10 Judith’s Reading Room ‘Stand Out’ libraries are:
- Teach Rwanda, Muhanga, South Province Rwanda
- Rev. Dr, Leoda Topps, Pastor, Avery Chapel Chapel AME Church, Southaven, Mississippi
- Casa Guadalupe, Allentown, Pennsylvania
- Fox Chase Cancer Center, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
- VA “100 “ Program at Various VA Hospitals, Lebanon, Pennsylvania
- Harkins’ House, Portland, Oregon
- Anjali House, Siem Reap, Cambodia
- Alif Laila Book Bus Society, Lehore, Pakistan
- La Palapa Society, Todos Santos, Mexico
- The Leadership Center, Zambrano, Honduras
“By supporting the good work of others, we aspire to share and celebrate people who are doing genuinely astonishing work, instilling in others a love of reading,” said Scott Leiber, Co-Founder of Judith’s Reading Room.
In addition to libraries, Judith’s Reading Room holds an annual competition for the “Freedom Through Literacy Award.” Initiated in 2015, Judith’s Reading Room has disbursed $33,500 in prize money, honoring 31 individual champions of literacy in the United States, the Philippines, Bhutan, Pakistan, Rwanda, Cambodia, Mexico, Australia, Zimbabwe and Greece.
Applications for the 2020 Freedom Through Literacy Award may be found at www.judithsreadingroom.org/freedom-through-literacy-award/. Deadline is July 1st. Winners announced end of July.