The Pinkerton Foundation in New York City has announced the launch of a neighborhood literacy initiative in South Jamaica, Queens, and awarded nearly $1.2 million in grants in support of the community-based program.
Focused on two low-income neighborhoods where reading scores historically have been poor, the pilot program aims to help more than three thousand children and their families build strong literacy skills by providing services that build on existing programs and creating additional services to fill gaps in current literacy programming. To that end, ten literacy organizations will collaborate on efforts to help children read at grade level by third grade and sustain that success beyond elementary school. In addition, the organizations will engage in community- and school-wide events and publicity campaigns designed to send a message about the importance of literacy.
"We believe the Literacy Initiative has the potential to make a significant impact on two communities that are plagued with high poverty and extremely low literacy rates," said Pinkerton Foundation president Rick Smith. "Collaboration is the key to success. By expanding and coordinating a ladder of programs that employ healthcare providers, senior citizens, college students, and parent mentors, librarians, and other trained professionals, the initiative hopes to inspire a culture of literacy in South Jamaica."
For a complete list of grant recipients, visit the Pinkerton Foundation website.