January/February 2022: The Literacy Cooperative

Happy New Year, TKB friends and family. I will never turn down the opportunity for a fresh start, and so the beginning of a new year feels both promising and exciting. 2021 was a fun, busy and successful year, and I am looking forward to continued growth of the TKB mission and initiatives in the coming months. If you are like me, you might at least start off with a few resolutions or intentions for the new year—drink more water, start an exercise routine, decrease your screen time, order more cookies from TKB (ha), read more—you get the idea. For the next two months, we are going to focus on reading, but more specifically on literacy, with The Literacy Cooperative as the featured organization for this next campaign.

Reading is something I know I take for granted. It’s a skill that came easily to me as a child, and my mother made a point to get as many books into my hands as she could afford. Perhaps, because of this, I was able to navigate high school, college and a graduate program without too many issues so long as I put in the time and effort. Next came job applications and a career. While this may seem like a natural process for many of us, its an evolution that is not accessible to everyone—an issue that is further complicated by long-standing social and economic inequalities.

The Literacy Cooperative is an organization which aims to increase awareness of the importance of early literacy, improve access to books, tutors, career and professional development resources, and overcome the barriers that exist to effectively addressing these things within the community. By promoting policies and funding programs such as Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library, which mails enrolled children a new book every month until their 5th birthday, and 2GEN Cuyahoga, which seeks to restructure the way literacy and workforce training programs are able to recruit and retain participants, The Literacy Cooperative not only acknowledges the complexity of the issue of literacy in our community, but brings multiple different organizations, foundations and individuals together to tackle the issue from multiple different angles.

My goal for the next eight weeks is to take a closer look at some of the programs and initiatives of The Literacy Cooperative and share some of their insights and ideas into how we can contribute to addressing the issue of literacy right here at home. The profits of all sales during the months of January and February 2022 will be donated to The Literacy Cooperative to support their ongoing initiatives and programs here in Northeast Ohio.

For more information about The Literacy Cooperative, please check out their website here.

UPDATE: Together, we raised $1757.51 for The Literacy Cooperative! Thank you for your big heart, your sweet tooth, and your generosity toward this very special organization. Please continue to show The Literacy Cooperative some love and make sure that all the kiddos in your life are signed up for The Imagination Library! Don’t forget that a donation of just $25 supplies a child with books for a year, so if you have some spare change in your piggy bank, that’s a great way to make it go a long way.

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