Hunger Fight

Feed the Need to Read

Today’s children are tomorrow’s leaders; they are our hope for the future, to build a strong and thriving economy and society. The lack of reading skills can impact learning and future success. In Hunger Fight’s work with elementary teachers and administrators participating in the Feed the Backpack program, in addition to hunger, literacy was frequently discussed as one of the biggest problems facing our children, particularly those living in poverty.

Hunger Fight is working to address the literacy challenges our children face. Literacy skills begin at birth and build on relationships and experiences that occur during infancy and early childhood. Emergent literacy has the biggest impact on the academic success of a child and is the root of reading success and forms the basis for learning in all subjects.

90% of a child’s critical brain development occurs by age 5. Children who receive high quality education by age five are 70% more likely to graduate from high school. Achievement gaps between children in poverty and those from more affluent families become apparent by 18 months. When children start behind, they rarely catch up. But when children are read to from an early age, they become better readers and students. Early reading experiences provide opportunities to build vocabulary and literacy rich environments that support development of pre-reading and cognitive skills that ensure children are prepared for success in school and in life.

To address these issues and help children develop reading skills, Hunger Fight, in partnership with a nationally known literacy program, is launching a pilot program that serves those who are at most risk: ages 0-5. Books will be mailed each month directly to the child’s home to encourage children and families alike to spend time with books. The pilot program will launch in the fall of 2018 and will start serving children in two zip codes in Jacksonville, FL. In conjunction with that program, we are also collecting books that will be distributed to elementary children that will continue to feed the need to read begun with the early literacy program.

How can you help? The cost is only $25 dollars a year per child to enable them to receive books selected by a committee of early childhood experts to be age-appropriate and align with the child’s developmental needs. Your donation will help us reach more children, providing books to children in need and changing children’s attitudes towards reading and early literacy skills.

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