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Low Income Children Often Don't Have Books at Home -- But One Organization Wants To Solve This Problem

Low income children with books

How important are books in the home for children? According to Reading Is Fundamental (RIF), the largest children’s literacy nonprofit organization in the U.S., children who do not have access to books and do not read regularly are among the most vulnerable Americans.

Why books are important

About 40 percent of U.S. 4th graders are not able to attain basic reading proficiency levels. Among low-income and some minority families, the rate is even higher. A study at the University of Nevada shows that having books in the home is just as important to a child's education as having parents who are college-educated. In fact, having just 20 books in the home increases a child's education by 2.4 years in the U.S.

What one organization is doing

In Denver, Colorado, an organization called Book Trust recognizes the importance of books to a child's education and is bringing books to children at school -- to read and to keep. They are reaching out to children who live in some of the poorest communities in Denver and across the state of Colorado and bringing them brand new books for them to keep for their very own.

The results

The children have all responded with excitement and eagerness to fill their minds with fact and fiction as they pour through the pages of their new books. They are not only learning but loving it. In 2013, more than 25,000 young students received a gift of books. The Book Trust Program is planning to give more books to children again this year and wants to reach beyond Denver and Colorado and help impoverished children around the country by expanding the program.

For more information on The Book Trust Program, visit www.booktrust.org

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