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    First lady reads to kids, donates books on Int'l Literacy Day

    3:09 AM, Sep 7, 2012   |    comments
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    LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (Sept. 7, 2012) - In observance of International Literacy Day, First Lady Ginger Beebe will join the Alex Foundation and the Arkansas Reading Association to help distribute over 1,000 books today, September 7 at 11 a.m.

    100 books will be  donated both to Our House and Dorcas House for transitional children residents; 100 books will be donated to St. Francis House to establish a library for transitional families; and 400 books will be donated to both Dermott Elementary School Library and to CB King Memorial School for special needs children.  

    Approximately 1,100 recycled and new reading books are made available through purchases made by the Alex Foundation and 123 new books are made available by its partner, First Book.

    "The idea is to put books into the hands of children," says Chad Cummings Jr with the Alex Foundation. "When a child has his or her own book, there's just this pride of possession and all of a sudden it really engenders that desire to read."

    The Alex Foundation's depository of books being donated includes the following: The Trumpet of the Swan, Chicka Chicka Boom Boom, You Can Do It, Read All About It, Parrott in the Oven and a variety of popular engaging short stories for children and youth.

    The Alex Foundation, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, offers academic scholarship assistance and educational resources for students attending two Arkansas Delta schools, Dermott and McGehee High Schools, as well as Parkview High School in Little Rock.

    The mission of the Alex Foundation is to engage, engender and enlighten students to pursue careers and entrepreneurial opportunities in architecture, art and mathematics through mentoring, strengthening their capacity, and supporting their educational attainment and continued advancement to meet domestic and global challenges. 

    Arkansas Reading Association is an affiliate of the International Reading Association. International Literacy Day was first observed by IRA on September 8, 1967, to coincide with the beginning of the new school year in many countries, and to recognize the role literacy plays in everyone's life.  It is an opportunity for literacy leaders to recommit to policies and practices that give hope to those marginalized by their lack of education, skills, and knowledge, including an estimated 860 million adults (two-thirds of whom are women) who cannot read or write and the more than 100 million children who lack access to equity in education.

    (Source: Arkansas Reading Association)

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