LANSING, MI -- Children in families living in poverty often have very little to call their own. Food and shelter take priority over toys and books. As a result, these children often start school already behind their peers. In 2016, the Scripps Howard Foundation, employees of The E.W. Scripps Company and members of the Scripps family came together to launch the "If you give a child a book ..." campaign. The result: more than 40,000 books for children in need. In 2017, the campaign coincided with back-to-school season.
According to the Capital aArea Literary Coalition there are over 80,000 functionally illiterate adults in Clinton, Eaton and Ingham Counties. It is logical that if the parents are not reading, then the children more than likely are not reading either. There are organizations that are doing something about the low literacy rate in the Greater Lansing Area.
Local television station, FOX 47 WSYM employees and Scripps Foundation collectively raised money and donated just over 1,000 books to children in the Greater Lansing Area. On October 23, 2017, Kevin Brown the Community Affairs Coordinator and meteorologist Dustin Bonk visited Mid-Michigan Leadership Academy, which was one of the four schools in the area to receive books.
During an assembly, almost 300 students were able to pick out their own book. The books ranged from kindergarten to 8th grade reading level.
The other two schools to receive books were Pleasant View Magnet School and Riddle Elementary School. Each school received about 300 books a piece. At the time of printing, the last school had not been chosen.