Sunday, December 5, 2010

What I've Done

Through my interest in the success of Literacy, I have had the opportunity to volunteer, raise money, and more importantly, raise awareness.  I have had the privilege of volunteering at my community libraries where I serve as a reading tutor.  My duty at the libraries is to teach one child at a time, how to read.  It is beyond rewarding to see the amount of progress that each child makes, and also to see the pride in their eyes.  If I am not assisting a child on improving their reading skills, I am listening to a child express their passion and excitement for reading.  I have also held several benefit fundraising dinners at my local Applebee’s restaurants.  Applebee’s has been extremely accommodating and understanding of my passion to raise awareness of the importance of reading, and also to raise funds for the Ohio Literacy Network.  These fundraising dinners are a great way of my community being actively involved in a great cause, while at the same time, enjoying a great dinner with great company.  Applebee’s has donated 15% of every check from every table which presented a “Learning through Literacy” flyer.  I am very proud of the amount of funds that I have raised, and all proceeds were delivered to benefit The Ohio Literacy Network.  These fundraisers were extremely successful, and I strive to have many more in the future.   I have also held other smaller fundraisers to benefit The Ohio Literacy Network.  I have set up games in my local libraries.  For example, I have set up a poster board filled with riddles, and each guess at the riddle is one quarter, or donation.  When a person gives one quarter, they are given the answer.  If their guess to the riddle was correct, they get a lollipop.  Either outcome, they walk away with the satisfaction that they have just benefited a great cause.  I have also held a contest through my library that raised awareness to the importance of reading.  I am very pleased to say that this contest has actively engaged the kids of my community.  Since I absolutely believe that strong leaders develop from active readers, I held a contest, along with an incentive, that encouraged the kids of my community to get involved!  The flyer stated “Do YOU want to win a Chipotle Gift Card?”  The contest rules were that these kids had to write a short essay on how the person they are today today, and their goals today are inspired by a book they have read in the past.  The amount of contestants was very impressive, and this contest was extremely successful.   I feel privileged to have the opportunity to raise funds, and also to raise awareness of the importance of reading.  I will continue to positively benefit this cause that is so close to my heart, as well as the hearts of all Americans. 

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