(NewsUSA) – Marine Toys for Tots is the Nation’s flagship children’s Christmastime charity, but the Program extends to helping children and families year-round. As children prepare for the new school year, the Toys for Tots Literacy Program continues its successful Back to School Books campaign, which distributed over 500,000 books to Title I funded schools last year. The Department of Education, through Title I of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act, provides financial assistance to schools with high percentages of children from low-income families to help ensure that all children meet challenging academic standards.
One key objective of the Marine Toys for Tots Program is to support child development at Christmastime and beyond. The Toys for Tots Literacy Program, launched in 2008, has made a positive impact in the lives of underprivileged children by giving them access to age-appropriate books throughout the year. The Program provides economically disadvantaged children with the books and educational resources that can help them build the confidence and self-esteem that will help them compete academically and succeed in life.
“This program not only brings the joy of reading to these children, but also serves as an important tool in breaking the cycle of poverty,” says LtGen Jim Laster, USMC (Retired), President & CEO of the Marine Toys for Tots Foundation.
This year, the Toys for Tots Literacy Program is providing over 600,000 books to Title I funded schools across the Nation. Cedar Forest Elementary School, a Title I school in Fredericksburg, VA, recently hosted a back-to-school “Back to Pack” fundraiser, and families of more than 815 children enrolled at the school came to show their support. The Toys for Tots Literacy Program provided books to this Title I funded school’s event, and the students selected books that piqued their interest.
“The biggest indicator for a child being successful in their educational career is the fact that they’ve had books read to them consistently by the age of five. Getting these books into their hands and setting them up for success is a life-changing thing,” says Cedar Forest 5th grade teacher Joselyn Beyer. Literacy is essential to developing a strong sense of well-being and citizenship — the Program is more than just providing books! Support the Back to School Books campaign by visiting the Toys for Tots Literacy Program Donation Page: https://www.toysfortots.org/literacy/Default.aspx for more details or to donate.
Be sure to follow Toys for Tots on Facebook and Instagram to see how the Literacy Program is bringing the joy of reading to children in need across the Nation! Hope is just a book away.