IN THECOMMUNITY

THE CHALLENGE

Food or books- which would you pick for your child? The parents of over 44,800 children in Rhode Island are forced to make choices like this every day. Without a doubt, a parent would provide immediate essentials while educational items like books fall to the bottom of the list. This is a problem because a child's access to and ownership of books is essential for the development of literacy skills.

ADDRESSING THE ISSUE

According to the National Literacy Trust, 92% of children who own their own books read at or above grade level expectations. Books Are Wings (BAW) is the only organization in Rhode Island who meets this need by putting 50,000 free books in the hands of children ages birth to middle school each year. BAW partners with communities to reach children and families in their environment. These events are hosted in partnership with community outreach organizations throughout the year. These programs directly serve children and their families. Sites include community centers, homeless shelters and soup kitchens. BAW will distribute 10,000 books through these outreach events.