In America, 1 in 4 children are illiterate. Two-thirds of children who are unable to read at their grade level by the age 10 end up in jail or on welfare as an adult and have a 78 percent chance of never catching up (www.begintoread.com/research/literacystatics). And according to UNICEF, “nearly a billion people will enter the 21st century unable to read a book or sign their names and two thirds of them are women.” For these reasons alone, we at Rimini Street believe it is crucial to develop a love for books starting at an early age. That is why we celebrated World Book Day with the students of Grass Valley Elementary School by donating 300 books and spending an afternoon reading to the wonderful students of GVE!
Rimini Street team members worked closely with the head librarian of Grass Valley Elementary School, Cindy Pierson, to purchase almost all the books on their Wish List and to donate an additional 150 gently used children’s books on April 19th. We brought with us not just Award Winning and special request books, but juice boxes, snacks and fruits for all 350 children of GVE plus an enthusiastic team of volunteer readers ready to entertain the various grades and classrooms with our fun impressions of Dr. Suess and other literary characters. We learned from the librarian that not all schools in the Oakland area are as lucky to have libraries on their campus and in fact, many children do not have a single book to call their own. As we read one on one with the students and out loud to entire classrooms, we soaked up the smiles and the positive, radiant energy of the GVE students and couldn’t help but to beam right along with them. We look forward to celebrating many more World Book Days with the Grass Valley Elementary School as well as other educational institutions that promote literacy as a foundation to success.
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