MENDHAM TWP. –Black River Middle School, eighth grader Kyle Noble is a volunteer for the Global Literacy Project, Inc. who collected 65 backpacks and school supplies over the summer for the entire entering class of the Tiny Tot Spot program in New Brunswick .
In addition, he collected binders for teachers in Costa Rica.
“I was inspired to become a volunteer of Global Literacy, a non-profit organization, by witnessing the excited volunteer efforts of my fifth grade English teacher Meryl Ironson,” Noble said. “I am now feeling that same enthusiasm as I witness the good in people as I try to organize various fundraising efforts. The collected pens and pencils will be put to good use.”
He said that with additional donations from Unilux, Staples, The Dogwood School of Chester, and friends, they delivered 65 backpacks and school supplies for children in need.
Kyle also reached out to an innovative project started by Hilltop elementary school service men, Rich Hoagland, Ralph Puco, and Sterry Colvin who provided several hundred pencils and pens for donation.
About four years ago, Hoagland became curious about how many pens and pencils were left on the floors each day. He started collecting them in an old mail bin to see how quickly it would fill up. By year’s end, the bin was overflowing.
He enlisted his colleagues in a plan to keep the tools out of the trash, and give them to kids in need.
“We were astounded by the number of pens and pencils that students were losing track of each day,” Hoagland said. “We agreed that these tools still had a lot of life left in them and decided to start collecting them for the kids who cannot afford school supplies.”
Thursday, September 8, 2011
The United Nations’ (UN) International Literacy Day annually falls on September 8. The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) and its partners promote the day to raise people’s awareness of and concern for literacy issues in the world and to underline the significance of literacy for healthy societies.
According to UNESCO, “Despite many and varied efforts, literacy remains an elusive target: some 796 million adults lack minimum literacy skills which means that about one in six adults is still not literate; 67.4 million children are out-of-school and many more attend irregularly or drop out.”
The theme for the 2011 International Literacy Day is “Literacy and Peace”.
Teens from the New Brunswick community shared original writing and competed for prizes in a poetry performance contest, “Share it Out Loud,” at the New Brunswick Free Public Library on Thursday, May 5. The program, sponsored by the Global Literacy Project, Inc. and the GOYA project at Rutgers University, featured members of the poetry collective Verbal Mayhem.
Verbal Mayhem members performed original poetry to open up the event. Following their performance, the poets and teacher/GLP volunteer Meryl Ironson helped teens choose and practice poems for the competition, and then the teens were invited to read. Teens could read their original work or choose a poem provided at the program.
Imagine studying geography without a map or learning about economic migration without a window into the country right next door to you. For many students in the townships of South Africa, social studies is very abstract but an excited group of Rutgers University students, members of the Africana House of the Douglass Residential College are transforming a classroom in the heart of Soweto into a social studies room that will connect township students with the wider world. Working alongside local educators and South African college students, the primary school classroom will be repainted, the floor tiled and and the furniture repaired. A variety of media resources will also be installed to create an enriched environment.
The women from the Africana House have been working towards this goal for the past five months. The participated in the Global Literacy Project’s “Walk for Literacy” to raise funding towards the trip and they volunteered in GLP’s New Jersey elementary school reading programs to gain experience.
The core idea of installing a social studies room at the Thabisile Primary School is actually an outgrowth of GLP’s multi-year School-to-School partnership between Thabisile in South Africa and the Chatham Day School (CDS) in New Jersey. During the 2010 school year, students at CDS conducted several book drives and fund raisers for Thabisile. This included a fundraisers around bead-work created by Thabisile students and parents that was brought back to CDS. In deciding what project GLP should support with the CDS donation, inspiration came from the popular social studies room at CDS.
The project is now underway and by next week we should see a final report with pictures!
A Story of the Puerto Rican Action Board (New Jersey) and Two Committed Staff Members
New Brunswick, NJ., November, 2010-The Puerto Rican Action Board (PRAB) had modest beginnings around volunteer efforts to provide adult English classes to recently arrived migrants to the New Brunswick area. By the middle of the 1970s the PRAB was established as the first full time bilingual/ multilingual curriculum daycare Center for children ages 2 ½ to 5 in NJ. Since that time the PRAB has expanded and intensified its efforts to improve local neighborhoods by providing: child care, youth development, job training and placement opportunities, housing counseling, rehabilitation, construction and weatherization of homes, community advocacy, and community development activities.
The PRAB is important as an example of the change that nonprofits can make in a community. The Global Literacy Project became aware of the PRAB’s outreach to low income children in the community several years ago and began an initiative whereby three times per year new books were donated to all the children participating in the daycare and kindergarten programs. In the last two years, in response to feedback from Joyce Chase, Director of Education, and Site Directors Darshna Amarnani and Adriana Crosby, that the children could benefit from interaction with native English speakers GLP piloted a reading program in 17 classes across the city. The program was well received and in the Fall of 2010 GLP won a grant from the Verizon Foundation to expand the reading initiative at one site, the daycare facility where Site Director Shari Boyington had a number of exciting ideas. The “Take Reading Home” program brings students from Rutgers University to read to the children via a series of structured phonics books that build reading and oral skills. The books are matched with a software program that reproduces the book as a game. The students then receive smaller versions of the books to take home and read to their parents or other family members.
Much of the Puerto Rican Action Board’s daycare’s success is due to its committed staff, some whom have worked with the PRAB for over 20 years. When the Daycare Site Director Shari Boyington was recently tapped to head up a much larger program within the PRAB system—right at the beginning of the school year—new Site Director Patricia Hernandez had an impotant resource for easing the transition, i.e., two stalwart PRAB members who have been integral to the daycare program since its creation, Ms. Gloria Nuñez and Ms. Carmen Ortiz-Adorno.
Ms. Gloria Nuñez has been a part of the Puerto Rican Action Board’s staff for 28 years. She began working with the Puerto Rican Action Board as a volunteer while attending high school. She recalls working as a teacher’s aid and three years later she became a teacher. All of her teaching experience has come from working with the Puerto Rican Action Board. She came to the United States from Puerto Rico so she can relate to obstacles that non-English speakers face when attempting to learn the English language for the first time.
Ms. Carmen Ortiz-Adorno has been a part of the Puerto Rican Action Board for 26 ½ years. Like Ms. Nuñez she began working in the Puerto Rican Action Board as a teacher’s assistant and later became a teacher. She has stated that when she began working with the Puerto Rican Action Board she had great mentors that opened her interest inworking with children. Ms. Ortiz-Adorno reflected on the fact that when the Puerto Rican Action Board first opened its doors the student population was mostly Latino but as the New Brunswick community has became aware of the daycare center and it’s commitment to assisting anyone with need, the daycare population has become as diverse as the city’s population.
Both Ms. Gloria Nuñez and Ms. Carmen Ortiz- Adorno have seen the changes that the daycare has undergone. They recall when the Puerto Rican Action Board was housed in one building but now it has three different locations. One pre-school is located on Drift Street, another on Townsend Street and the daycare is on Somerset Street. The committed vision of the Puerto Rican Action Board brings hope to the New Brunswick community and with its committed staff devoted to educating the future leaders of the New Brunswick community the future is full of possibilities.
For more information on the Puerto Rican Action Board visit:
Winner of Cannes Lions 2010 Direct Silver Lion Ad prize
The My First Book Project / JWT Cape Town
Developing nations face a literacy crisis. Only 20% of schools have books, and children literally don’t have the books to learn from. We wanted to do something to help. We wanted to get first learner-reader books into the hands of these kids.
The target audience was twofold: people in our advertising network, and underprivileged children in developing countries.
Our strategy was to show and inspire people that by transforming a piece of waste, they could transform the life of a child.
The Global Literacy Project sponsored a World Story Telling Day at The Bragg School in Chester, NJ in March with author Marcus Reeves. The premise of World Story Telling Day is that as many people as possible tell and listen to stories in as many languages and at as many places as possible, during the same day and night. Participants tell each other about their events in order to share stories and inspiration, to learn from each other and create international contacts.
Storytelling has been a part of every culture around the world from the start of every community from the most ancient of times. This year March 20th was World Storytelling Day and March 21st was World Poetry Day. Reeves talked about what inspired human communities to tell stories. He noted that Man’s first stories were narrative poems and that in fact poetry is the oldest of all literature. This nexus between storytelling and poetry continues down to the present day and is reflected in modern variations such as rap and hip-hop music.
Finally, after enthralling the students with several examples from his own and other authors’ writings, Reeves noted that the students in the audience were the potential tellers of tomorrow’s stories. He noted that communities will lose something precious if we don’t have tellers.
The GLP family had great news to share when Princeton senior Connor Diemand-Yauman was named the winner of the University’s 2010 Moses Taylor Pyne Honor Prize, the highest general distinction conferred on an undergraduate.
At a luncheon on Saturday, Feb. 20 Connor was recognized as the senior who has most clearly manifested excellent scholarship, strength of character and effective leadership. Previous recipients include the late Princeton President Emeritus Robert F. Goheen ‘40, former U.S. Sen. Paul Sarbanes ‘54 and current U.S. Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor ‘76.
Connor served as president of his class during his freshman, sophomore and junior years, and was elected president of the undergraduate student body in 2009.
Last summer, he volunteered with the Global Literacy Project as a teacher’s aide at a farm school in Randfontein, South Africa.
Next summer, he hopes to volunteer with the Global Literacy Project in St. Vincent and the Grenadines. After that, he intends to accept an offer to write and act on his own children’s English educational show on Korean PBS.
“I feel humbled and extremely honored to be receiving this distinction and am indebted to everyone who has so selflessly helped and guided me along the way,” Connor said. “This is as much their award as it is mine.”
For the full story see “News at Princeton“
NEW BRUNSWICK, NJ– October 5, 2009 – Close to 400 students in kindergarten at three New Brunswick nursery and pre-school programs will receive new books this week, thanks to a book drive by Global Literacy Project, Inc., as part of the “Take Reading Home” program being piloted with the Puerto Rican Action Board.
The books will be donated along with backpacks containing school supplies for their fall classes. Global Literacy Project volunteers will be continuing an ongoing reading program during the fall at each site.
Anyone interested in supporting the “Take Reading Home” program can become a volunteer in the program. After completing one training session, volunteers spend just a few hours each week teaching kindergartners to read. For more information please contact Emeka Akaezuwa at firstname.lastname@example.org
Chatham Courier News
Literacy way across the world
Wednesday, May 28, 2008
By KATE BREX
CHATHAM TWP. – Students from divergent cultures discovered that the desire to learn is universal after participating in a yearlong global literacy program that collectively solidified students at the Chatham Day School on Shunpike Road with students at the Thabisile Primary School in Soweto, South Afric.
A school-to-school program designed to share global awareness and issues with students half-way around the world saw the Chatham Day School (CDS) on Shunpike Road partner with the Thabisile Primary School in Soweto, South Africa, in a year-long partnership promoting literacy and multiculturalism, which enabled middle school students in both countries to expand their collective worldview through shared videos, books and correspondence. [Continue reading story...]