• Donate Now

    We ask that you please make a donation to Judith’s Reading Room, in support of our ongoing recognition of what is being accomplished in the great world of literacy, as well as funding our shipment of children’s books, both domestically and internationally.

form test

Generous Pennsylvanians Applauded for Donating Books to Children in Need

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 Library on the move!

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.

Dear Cathy,

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.

Best always,
Basarat

Learn more about Basarat Kazim and her latest Freedom Through Literacy Award

Judith’s Reading Room a B&N 2020 Holiday Book Drive Charity

Dear Michael,
 
Thank you very, very much for naming Judith’s Reading Room the 2020 Holiday Book Drive charity for your Barnes & Noble store, located at Broadcasting Square, Wyomissing, PA.
 
Scott and I were amazed that in the first week of the drive, your generous patrons donated over 400 books to serve children with limited access to books!  We can’t imagine how many more books will be donated over the entire holiday season!!
 
These two pictures show how we got to work, immediately, to determine the exact perfect book for the exact perfect recipient organization!  Charmaine Tsosie, Navajo Nation in Chinle, AZ will receive a huge mix of books to add to her mobile library… Rev. Dr. Leoda Topps, Pastor AME Church, South Haven, MS will receive books featuring black children or written about African American people …. Chris McGilvery, Canyon, TX will receive elementary to middle school books….. Basarat Kazim, Lahore, Pakistan (currently visiting family in the USA) will receive the “ very early readers” for her to hand-carry in her luggage to Lahore, Pakistan … Dawn Bush, Casa Guadalupe, Allentown, PA will receive birth-to-five books for parents in the WIC program.
 
Including the packages with multiple books (we count each book as a separate book) we arrived at a grand total of 486 books with a cover price of $3,533.  
Again, Michael, thank you from all of us — and thank you in advance from all the children, all over the USA and the world for encouraging your patrons to donate books this holiday season.  Scott and I will be back as soon as you have another batch of books for us to pick up!
 
Cathy
@BNReadingPA 

Judith’s Reading Room’s 101th Library – Camel Named ‘Bright’ Delivers Books

NEWS RELEASE  
CONTACT:  Cathy Leiber
484-661-6151
 
Camel Named ‘Bright’ Delivers Books to Children in Hard to Reach Villages
 
October 29, 2020 — Today, Judith’s Reading Room announces its 101st library — the first-ever Judith’s Reading Room mobile library to utilize a camel to deliver books to children.  The camel driver, Murad, and his camel named ‘Bright,’  carried 500  children’s books to the nearly impossible to reach community of Kech Balochistan in southwest Pakistan.
 
The Camel Library for Kech Balochistan was awarded a 2020 Judith’s Reading Room ‘Freedom Through Literacy’ Board Option Prize.  The annual ‘Freedom Through Literacy Award’ honors champions of literacy from all disciplines from around the world.  To date, 36 individuals have been awarded prizes totaling $38,500.
 
In partnership with Ms. Basarat Kazim, President of Alif Laila Book Bus Society, who is credited with the creative and innovative camel library, Murad and Bright will visit three communities on a rotating basis delivering picture books, bi-lingual English & Urdu books, and English language very easy readers.
 
The Camel Library will circulate books via a monitoring system supervised by local volunteers.  Their goal is to develop a reading culture in these isolated communities.  Photos and videos of ‘Bright,’ the camel can be seen at 
 
“Upon seeing ‘Bright,’ one little girl exclaimed, “I never thought camels could carry books.  I only thought they could carry sticks or grass!”  “Parents report that now their children are the ones telling them stories.  Before, it was the other way around,” said Ms. Kazim.  She continued, “another girl exclaimed, ‘please let me keep more than one book — if I finish the book in one day what will I do for the rest of the week?’”
 
Judith’s Reading Room invites members of the community to donate brand new, very easy readers and picture books to add to the Camel Library.  Name tags will be inserted into the gift books with the donors name, if desired.  Donations should be mailed before November 10th to Judith’s Reading Room, P.O. Box 164, Blandon, PA  19510.
 
The mission of Judith’s Reading Room 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 128,000 books worth nearly US$1.4 million.  
 
Applications for the 2021 Freedom Through Literacy Award will be posted on our website at www.judithsreadingroom.org in January 2021.  
 

Chinle Planting Hope “READ in Beauty”

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

Chinle Planting Hope Facebook Page

Navajo Times original Article

READ in Beauty Go Bookmobile Fund Me

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 CELEBRATION

2020 FREEDOM THROUGH LITERACY AWARD
Virtual Award Celebration – Sept. 26, 2020

GRAND PRIZE – 2020 Freedom Through Literacy

Grand Prize Award – $2,500

Christopher McGilvery, “Teachers and Student Ambassadors Project”
Canyon, Texas

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.”
                                                                                                   -Chris McGilvery

Videos

Slide Show

 

 

JUDITH’S AWARD – 2020 Freedom Through Literacy

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”

Video

Slide Show

 

 

BOARD OPTION PRIZES – 2020 Freedom Through Literacy

Board Option Prize – $500

Charmaine Tsosie, “Chinle Planting Hope”
Navajo Nation, Chinle, Arizona

 

Through her organization, Chinle Planting Hope, Charmaine Tsosie works tirelessly for her Diné (Navajo) community to
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
mobile library.
“Winning the award is such an honor to my community and me. It feels like the Navajo Nation is seen and heard.”
                                                                                                           -Charmaine Tsosie

Board Option Prize – $500

Basarat Kazim, “Camel Library for Kech Balochistan”
Lahore, Pakistan

Bringing libraries to sparsely populated communities in Pakistan requires creativity. For Basarat Kazim, the solution wasn’t on four wheels, but four legs. Camels, outfitted with custom-made book pouches, will carry hundreds of books to the district of Kech Balochistan. This effort specifically focuses on young girls, who often don’t have opportunities to attend school in the district. We proudly award Basarat a Board Option Award to help establish the first-ever camel library.
“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.”
                                                                     -BasaratKazim

UPDATES!