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The core of Judith’s Reading Room is the belief that books change lives. At Casa Guadalupe in Allentown, Pennsylvania, children under five are bringing home their first books thanks to a creative partnership.
The first thing you see when you visit the Women, Infant and Children (WIC) Program at Casa Guadalupe in Allentown is a bright red cart of books. Small books, big books, books with wheels, and books with fuzzy fur poking out the covers. It’s a tantalizing display of literary delight, and it is hard to resist when you are five and under.
“Kids are crying and begging for books every time that they come to their appointment,” says former Freedom Through Literacy honoree and WIC Program Coordinator Dawn Bush. “They even still ask for books over stickers!” Moms love the program, too. At each visit, they can bring home a book to add to their child’s library–a luxury many cannot afford on their own.
Started in April 2013, the Birth-2-Five Initiative was Judith’s Reading Room’s answer to the 30-million word gap. Research shows that by age three, a child in poverty hears 30 million fewer words than a child from a middle-income home. This impacts a child’s ability to compete with his peers once he reaches elementary school and can have damaging effects on confidence, self-worth, and academic growth.
After a recent audit by Maternal & Family Health Services, the overseeing agency of the WIC program, it was recommended that books be added to the nutritionist’s office so children had something to focus on, giving their families quality uninterrupted time to listen to the important information the nutritionist was sharing.
Since the inception of the Birth-2-Five Initiative, Judith’s Reading Room has donated 15,649 children’s books to the WIC Program at Casa Guadalupe, building countless home libraries and changing lives.
Do you know a Champion of Literacy in your community? Do them a favor and share the 2019 Freedom Through Literacy Award application with them!
CONTACT: Cathy Leiber484-661-6151
Judith’s Reading Room Seeks Applicants for its
2019 Freedom Through Literacy Award
January 21, 2019 — Lehigh Valley, Pa. Judith’s Reading Room, a 501 (c) 3 literacy organization founded in 2010, announced today that applications for its 2019 Freedom Through Literacy Award can be found online at www.JudithsReadingRoom.org/APPLY. The prestigious award, that honors multiple winners, carries a total cash prize of $4,500. Deadline for submission of applications is July 1, 2019.
The annual Freedom Through Literacy Award — the signature element of Judith’s Reading Room — is open to individual champions of literacy including teachers, librarians, authors, researchers, educators and literacy nonprofits — anyone who has done exemplary work to instill in others a love of reading.
In addition to the $3,000 Grand Prize, the Judith’s Award worth $500, is limited to teachers, librarians and/or authors, who are also eligible to win the Grand Prize. The Board Option Award, totaling $1,000, was created to acknowledge the passion of our board members who are constantly on the lookout for individuals doing something exciting in the world of literacy.
Since its inception in 2010, Judith’s Reading Room has dedicated 96 libraries in 19 countries and counting, with 128,000 books donated valued at nearly $1.4 million dollars. Since 2015, The Freedom Through Literacy Award has disbursed $29,000 and has honored 25 individual champions of literacy in the United States, the Philippines, Bhutan, Pakistan, Rwanda, Cambodia and Mexico.
Local Champions of Literacy Dominate This Year’s Awards
July 30, 2018 — Lehigh Valley, Pa. — Judith’s Reading Room proudly announces this year’s Top Prize winner of its Freedom Through Literacy Award is the Macungie, Pa Willow Lane Elementary teaching duo Julia Dweck and Matthew Weimann. The goal of their project, “Release Your Fireflies,” is to creatively equip children to navigate a complex world through storytelling, paving the way for an appreciation of and lifetime membership in the universal library of human literature. Top Prize award is $3,000.
Carin Mileshosky, Library Director, Fleetwood Area Public Library, Fleetwood, Pa (a Pa Library Association Gold Star Library) is awarded the organization’s Judith’s Award in the amount of $500. The Judith’s Award, a new prize category this year, is designed exclusively for teachers, librarians or authors. Carin’s integrated and fun-filled program, “FleetwoodSUMMER 2018,” attracted 180 individuals to attend creative programs; 150 of whom committed to reading over the summer, thereby reducing the negative impact of so-called “summer slide.”
The Board Option Award with a total prize of $1,000 is shared amongst four visionary individuals. Christopher Dew for his boy scout Eagle Project, “Mini-Library for Lehigh Valley H.O.P.E.” is awarded $300; Ana Luhrs, Lafayette College’s Skillman Librarian for “The Leadership Center Library in Zambrano, Honduras” is awarded $300; Cheryl Stoner-Gutshall, Dover Area School District, for her project, “Outdoor Education Book Creator” is awarded $200; and, Marsha Townsend for her nonprofit, “Bringing Up a Bookworm” is awarded $200.
A celebratory award dinner will be held in their honor on Wednesday, September 12 at 6 p.m. at MELT, located at The Promenade Mall, 2880 Center Valley Parkway, Center Valley, Pa. The public is encouraged to attend the dinner. To reserve your space, a check made payable to Judith’s Reading Room in the amount of $45 per person must be mailed to P.O. Box 164, Blandon, PA 19510 and received no later than Wednesday, August 29.
Judith’s Reading Room, a literacy 501 (c) 3 based in eastern Pa was founded in 2010 in memory of Judith Krug, first cousin to the founders. 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 dedicating 96 libraries in 19 countries (and counting), with over 127,000 books donated and valued at nearly $1.4 million dollars.
Since 2015, The Freedom Through Literacy Award has disbursed (including 2018 winners) $29,000 and has honored 25 individual champions of literacy in the United States, the Philippines, Bhutan, Pakistan, Rwanda, Cambodia and Mexico.
Visit our Freedom Through Literacy Award Page
Judith’s Reading Room VOLUNTEER, Christopher Dew, received his Eagle Scout award today. His project, establishing a library at Lehigh Valley H. O. P. E., was inspired by his volunteer work at Judith’s Reading Room. Lisa Boscola, PA STATE SENATOR, honored his achievement.
Christopher Dew, one of just 4% of all scouts who achieve the hard-earned Eagle Scout designation.
Cathy Leiber and Kimberly Bush made a short video sending a message to Dominique Zara, municipal librarian in Resita City, Romania in honor of International Day of the Book.
Dominique celebrated the International day of the book and the Day of English that takes place on April 23 this year. Some children at daycare centers in the city who implemented hours of English came to the Judith’s Reading Room library to read together and enjoy the beautiful books.
On September 8, 2014, UNESCO’s International Literacy Day, five libraries were dedicated in Resita City, Romania. The five libraries, one of which is named the Judith’s Reading Room Library, serves 70,000 residents. The request from municipal librarian, Dominique Zara, is for a total of 6,000-7,000 books, including books to teach English to city politicians. Her goal with respect to that audience is to demonstrate that a library is an indispensable asset in a city and that librarians can do great things for all citizens.
Dominique is a librarian who Walks the Talk, Read more http://www.judithsreadingroom.org/librarian-walks-the-talk/
Mexico joins 18 other countries to open a Judith’s Reading Room Library
From The Palapa Society of Todos Santos
Changes to the 2018 Award will encourage teachers, librarians, and authors
January 29, 2018 — Lehigh Valley, Pa. Judith’s Reading Room, a non-profit literacy organization founded in 2010, is currently accepting applications for its 2018 “Freedom Through Literacy” Award. Changes to the 2018 Award will encourage teachers, librarians and authors both here and around the world.
The 4th annual “Freedom Through Literacy” Award, the signature element of Judith’s Reading Room, will honor a Top Prize winner with $3,000 cash. The “Judith’s Award,” a new prize category, in the amount of $500, is designed exclusively for teachers, librarians and authors. They are also eligible to win the Top Prize.
A second new prize is announced today: Prize totals vary — up to a total of $1,000 — Board members will nominate, on a rolling basis, champions of literacy. Called
“Board Option” this prize engages board members to be “on the lookout,” constantly, for exemplary individuals whose work instills in others a love of reading.
Applications for the 2018 “Freedom Through Literacy” Award are available on line at www.JudithsReadingRoom.org/APPLY. Anyone working in the field of literacy — teachers, librarians, authors, educators, booksellers — is encouraged to apply. Deadline for Applications: July 6, 2018.
Since its inception in 2010, Judith’s Reading Room has dedicated 95 libraries in 18 countries with over 127,000 books valued at nearly $1.4 million dollars. Since 2015, $24,500 cash has been awarded to winners of the “Freedom Through Literacy” Award.