"Literacy unlocks the door to learning throughout life, is essential to development and health, and opens the way for democratic participation and active citizenship "
- Kofi Annan, former United Nations Secretary-General
Its International Literacy Day on September 8th. So between now and then I'll be highlighting efforts to improve literacy and education around the world.
Why is literacy so important? In a letter to G-8 leaders, Mary Robinson, Bishop Desmond Tutu and Mohammad Yunus wrote: "Without skills such as literacy, numeracy and problem-solving, millions of children and adults are trapped in poverty. Education is the key to unlocking inter-generational deprivation as it offers the knowledge people need to live healthy, happy lives."
First up is Room to Read. Room to Read is dedicated to promoting and enabling global education. Founded in 2000, the organisation is based on the belief that education is crucial to breaking the cycle of poverty in the developing world. Since then, the organization has supported over three million children by providing better access to higher-quality educational opportunities. Room to Read has established more than 700 schools and over 7,000 bilingual libraries with five million books, and continues to support the education of nearly 7,000 girls. Room to Read is providing opportunities that change children's lives and communities throughout Bangladesh, Cambodia, India, Laos, Nepal, South Africa, Sri Lanka, Vietnam and Zambia. By 2010, Room to Read hopes to improve literacy for five million children by establishing over 10,000 libraries and distributing nearly nine million children's books.
Find out how YOU can get involved and support Room to Read today!