Generous Pennsylvanians Applauded for Donating Books to Children in Need
December 29, 2020 — Judith’s Reading Room, a nonprofit literacy organization based in eastern Pa, delivered “food for the soul” of children in need across this country thanks to the generous patrons of Wyomissing’s Barnes & Noble located in Broadcasting Square. Judith’s Reading Room was selected as its 2020 Holiday Book Drive Charity.
During the coronavirus pandemic, which brought many families to the breaking point, book lovers responded to the B&N Holiday Book Drive and donated a total of 1,918 books with a cover price value of $19,434. “It is impossible to state how emotional it is for families and children, who have suffered greatly this year, to receive brand new books thanks to Barnes & Noble and its book-loving patrons,” said Cathy Leiber, President, Judith’s Reading Room. She continued, “we are grateful for the confidence Barnes & Noble has placed on our organization to get the perfect books to the perfect children.”
As the books were collected weekly, Judith’s Reading Room allocated the donated books to its proven, award-winning organizations serving children at Casa Guadalupe in Allentown, PA, to children in rural Texas, to Navajo Nation children in Chinle, Arizona, to children educated by an AME pastor in South Haven, Mississippi, and to children who get their books delivered by a camel named Bright in Kech Balochistan, Pakistan.
Judith’s Reading Room was founded in 2010. Its mission is to enrich lives and societies by proactively encouraging freedom through literacy. To date, the organization has fulfilled that mission by establishing 101 libraries in 22 countries with over 130,000 books valued at over $1.4 million dollars. Its signature event is the annual Freedom Through Literacy Award competition which has awarded $38,500 in cash prizes to 35 champions of literacy.
Applications for the 2021 Freedom Through Literacy Award will be posted on the organization’s website at www.judithsreadingroom.org in late January 2021.
Camel drivers, outfitted with custom-made book pouches will travel to the least populated region in southwestern Pakistan. Basarat Kazim is named a 2020 Freedom Through Literacy Board Option prize winner for her mobile Camel Library for Kech Balochistan.
We cannot get enough of the new Camel Library. Here we have the camel on the move, on the way to their library destination.
Library destination reached! It is book selection and checkout time. This brings a new meaning to surreal, at least in terms of libraries.
Library destination reached! Books selected & checked out. Now it is story time – no description needed – the video tells it all! What a way to explain the impact that Basarat Kazim partnership with Judith Reading Room has!
Please also read the recent story in the Arab News-Pakistan Mobile camel library carries books to children in remote Pakistani villages
In addition, Basarat just received books donated via Barnes & Noble (Wyomissing, PA) @BNReadingPA holiday drive featuring Judith’s Reading Room as their 2020 Holiday Charity.
My share of excitement just arrived!! Simply love the early readers Barnes & Noble donated to honour the work of Judith’s Reading Room. The children will be absolutely fascinated.
Thank you so much.
Learn more about Basarat Kazim and her latest Freedom Through Literacy Award
Charmaine Tsosie, a 2020 Freedom Through Literacy Board Option Prize winner for her organization, Chinle Planting Hope received fantastic coverage in Navajo Times! The article is fascinating and makes Judith’s Reading Room so proud that Charmaine was selected for the 2020 Freedom Through Literacy Award.
Judith’s Reading is proud to offer new books for their “READ in Beauty ” effort. CPH hopes to raise startup costs of $204,570 through a combination of grants and private donations, according to its proposal. It’s an ambitious project for a small group of volunteers headed by a woman who’s also a mom, a student, and has a full-time job.
According to Arizona State Educational Reports, 67% of Chinle third-graders and 89% of high schoolers lack reading proficiency. The article goes into details how CPH addresses these issues.
Information: To donate, go to https://www.gofundme.com/f/chinle-quotread-in-beautyquot-bookmobile
Learn More about Charmaine’s organization …
2020 Freedom Through Literacy Award – Board Option Prize
Judith’s Reading Room’s mission is to enrich lives and societies by proactively encouraging Freedom Through Literacy. To date, the organization has fulfilled that mission by establishing 99 libraries in 21 countries with 128,000 books donated, valued at nearly $1.4 million dollars. The 100th Judith’s Reading Room library in Zimbabwe, previously scheduled to open in August 2020, has been delayed due to the Coronavirus pandemic.
The Freedom Through Literacy Award was initiated in 2015 as the organization’s signature event. Including the 2020 winners, the organization will have disbursed $38,500 in prize money, honoring 36 individual champions of literacy in the United States, the Philippines, Bhutan, Pakistan, Rwanda, Cambodia, Mexico, Australia, Zimbabwe and Greece.
The 2021 FREEDOM THROUGH LITERACY AWARD APPLICATION WILL BE AVAILABLE ONLINE IN JANUARY
2020 FREEDOM THROUGH LITERACY AWARD
Virtual Award Celebration – Sept. 26, 2020
Grand Prize Award – $2,500
Christopher McGilvery, “Teachers and Student Ambassadors Project”
Supporting one another with the power of literacy. For Chris McGilvery, this is the story he wants to tell in his community. Through his work with The Leaders Readers Network, Chris engages teachers across the United States and Dominica to grow leadership and literacy skills for students. The project partners with teachers to facilitate “buddy” teams in which older students read aloud to younger students while also learning about the
effects of illiteracy.
To date, Chris and his team have trained 205 students, partnered with 215 teachers, and impacted over 55,000 students’ lives.
It is with great enthusiasm that we honor Chris McGilvery as the Grand Prize winner of the 2020 Freedom Through Literacy Award for his innovative, child-centered approach to foster a love of reading – and leadership! – for children across the United States.
“This award inspires me to continue to build and grow the important work we are doing to support education equity and literacy for all.”
Judith’s Award – $1,500
Ty Allan Jackson, “Big Head Books”
Bronx, New York
Too often, children’s books represent non-white protagonists within a narrow range of topics. Award-winning author Ty Allan Jackson writes highly engaging books that buck this tradition, offering children who don’t always see themselves in the stories they read the opportunity for a different portrayal of their lives.
His books, including Danny Dollar Millionaire Extraordinaire and The Supadupa Kid superhero series, have garnered the attention of several awards and features on local and national news. More importantly, they have reached countless young Black and other minoritzed children with a powerful message:
your story is limitless.
We recognize Ty as winner of the 2020 Judith’s Award for his commitment to expanding narratives with his books.
“As an Indie author winning this award is a surreal experience. Awards usually go to the more established authors. The ones with the big followings and who dominate the bookshelves in bookstores and libraries across the county. Not the authors fighting to be noticed or begging bookstore to carry our works. So this award means that the little guy can make it. Get the accolade and gain the respect of the world of literature. But most importantly receive the love for those we write and draw for…our children.
Thank you for proving that our work matters!
-Ty Allan Jackson”
Board Option Prize – $500
Charmaine Tsosie, “Chinle Planting Hope”
Navajo Nation, Chinle, Arizona
create educational opportunities for whole families. She and her team will establish a mobile library vibrant with adult and
children’s’ books to inspire inter-generational reading habits among families who currently do not have access to a brickand-mortar library in Chinle. We warmly honor Charmaine with a Board Option Award to accelerate her work on the
“Winning the award is such an honor to my community and me. It feels like the Navajo Nation is seen and heard.”
Board Option Prize – $500
Basarat Kazim, “Camel Library for Kech Balochistan”
“Your support provides opportunities to thousands of girls to access treasures untold!! May they find the keys to the locked doors that hold them back.”