FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: Rebekah Manley
Coordinator, Texas Center for the Book
Women's Storybook Project of Texas Awarded Texas
Center for the Book 2018 Literacy Award
Readers 2 Leaders and Literacy First both awarded honorable mentions
The Women’s Storybook Project of Texas has been selected as the 2018 Texas Center for the Book Literacy Award winner. The nonprofit organization will receive $1,000 to use in its future work. Texas Center for the Book also gave honorable mentions to two additional literacy nonprofits, Readers 2 Leaders and Literacy First. Each honorable mention winner will receive a $500 prize.
The Women’s Storybook Project of Texas connects incarcerated mothers with their children through the power of reading. The organization’s volunteers visit women’s prisons in Texas once a month to record eligible mothers reading books aloud to their children, as well as short, personalized messages. The volunteers then mail a copy of the book with the recording to the children.
“We were delighted to receive such worthy applications from across the state in the third year of the Texas award. The purpose of this award is to highlight a winning organization while promoting a greater appreciation and awareness of literacy efforts statewide,” said Texas Center for the Book Coordinator Rebekah Manley. “The judges recognized how the Women’s Storybook Project of Texas utilizes books as a powerful connector and encourages reading across generations.”
Prison officials attribute an improvement in behavior at participating prisons because the incarcerated mothers must earn participation in the program by 90 days of good behavior. The children of the incarcerated mothers are able to connect with their mothers through their voice and the shared experience of reading the same book. The Storybook Project recorded 1,512 mothers and mailed 3,125 packages to children in 2017.
Readers 2 Leaders and Literacy First are both programs serving children who are behind in their literacy skills. They employ best practices and performance measures to bring children up to grade level as quickly as possible.
The awards will be given at the Third Annual Texas Authors Celebration, kicking off the Texas Book Festival, on Oct. 25 at the Lorenzo de Zavala State Archives and Library Building. Prize money for the 2018 contest was made possible by the generosity of David M. Rubenstein and the Library of Congress. The Texas Center for the Book Literacy Award is an annual contest that selects a nonprofit organization that has made significant contributions toward increasing literacy in Texas.
For more information on Texas Center for the Book initiatives, a project of the Texas State Library and Archives Commission, visit www.tsl.texas.gov/centerforthebook or contact Rebekah Manley, Texas Center for the Book Coordinator, at firstname.lastname@example.org or 512-936-2505.
The Texas State Library and Archives Commission provides Texans access to the information they need to be informed, productive citizens by preserving the archival record of Texas; enhancing the service capacity of public, academic, and school libraries; assisting public agencies in the maintenance of their records; and meeting the reading needs of Texans with disabilities. For more information, visit tsl.texas.gov.