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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Education, Educational Services, Libraries, Philanthropy, Voluntarism Promotion

Mission: The mission of MAKE WAY FOR BOOKS (MWFB) is to give all children the chance to read and succeed. MWFB provides a full continuum of early literacy education, programs, and resources to make sharing books an important and enjoyable part of families' lives. Our highest priority is to serve economically disadvantaged families with young children (birth through five) and early childhood professionals in under-served areas of Tucson and southern Arizona. MWFB envisions a community in which all children enter kindergarten with the necessary early literacy skills to be successful in school and throughout life.

Results: Make Way for Books early literacy programs create greater access to books, support early childhood educators, and empower families to make shared reading a part of their children’s daily lives. In 2013-14 more than 5,500 books were provided to participating sites and over 20,000 books were checked out from Make Way for Books lending libraries. As a result of Make Way for Books programming, 94% of participating preschool and childcare sites reported they provide more storytimes for their children. In prior years, 100% of participating parents increased the amount of time they spent reading with their young children following participation in Make Way for Books programming.

Target demographics: young children and families

Direct beneficiaries per year: 27,000 children in Pima County

Geographic areas served: Southern Arizona

Programs: one-on-one coaching and mentoring for child care and preschools teachers on early literacy strategies, family literacy programming, free books, community events, free Make Way for Books early literacy app, and many more

Community Stories

25 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

Our students never choose the Library Center until we had Kelly, our MWFB support specialist start coming in each week modeling how to make books come alive and add other activities as an extension. We love this program and I know my children at Growing Steps Childcare & Learning Center are well on their way to being lifelong lovers of books and the Library Center is always used..

Client Served

Rating: 5

Love this program and what they offer my childcare center and how they interact with the children. Ms.Kelly Larkin is famous to these children when she walks in the doors, they all get so happy with big smiles and run to her. The Children love story time and the projects Ms.Kelly has to offer when she comes.

Board Member

Rating: 5

MWFB enthusiastic staff is dedicated to giving our highest needs kids the basic skills they need to thrive.

Board Member

Rating: 5

My name is Crystal Soltero, and I am a university professor who has sent many students to intern for the folks at Make Way for Books. The students I send have ALWAYS been thoughtfully mentored and supported by the caring and supportive staff at MWFB. Because of this support, the growth I have witnessed in these students between start and finish has been phenomenal. The confidence these students display and their commitment to early literacy illustrates the power of the amazing team at Make Way for Books! Thank you to all of you who make my students feel so valued and so welcome!

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

Make Way for Books supports families and educators in the community. It offers free workshops to teachers and many times participants get to leave with a free book. The content of the workshops is always well researched and practical so it can be used immediately in the classroom.

Board Member

Rating: 5

MAKE WAY FOR BOOKS has grown so much in the last 18 years, from a small organization to one with over 30 employees. Because of this growth, they have been able to expand their program offerings to sooooo many more schools, preschools, daycares, families and educators. Parents and teachers are learning more about brain and language development and the importance of reading to children from birth. And they are learning that reading is fun!! MWFB is helping Tucson and southern Arizona to become a much better educated community!

Previous Stories
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Board Member

Rating: 5

I joined the Board of MAKE WAY FOR BOOKS after partnering with them to present familiy literacy programs at the public library. (I was a children's librarian.) Their mission and that of the library go hand in hand so beautifully. MWFB and the library want to put books into the hands of children and families and provide them with ideas for fun activities to enhance the reading experience. Reading is a vital life skill and making first experiences enjoyable leads to higher literacy levels in a community which leads to higher education levels and better economic situations. I am thrilled to be part of an organization that works to provide for such a basic need.

Kelly219

General Member of the Public

Rating: 4

Make Way for Books is an exciting energetic center for readers and learners of all ages. I first worked with them as a partner in a community fundsraiser. They engaged their volunteers and staff on many levels. They were enthusiastic, supportive and willing participants in a community event. I have more recently been in their space and it is full joy, passion and possibility.

1 miaruiz

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

Make Way For Books is my daughter's favorite place in the world to go to only second to Disneyland! I've been taking her to Make Way for Books' story times since she was 9months, starting with their Raising a Reader program at Manzo Elementary then with the weekly story times at their main location. I feel as if it's part of every parent's dream for their child to have a love for learning, and Make Way for Books helps instill that love perfectly! My daughter LOVES books and even more so when she can relate other things to the stories in the books we share with her, like songs, art, animals or every day things and events. Make Way for Books' programs do that so well for her and the benefits from those connections are monumental. I know every parent thinks their child is the smartest to ever live but to get countless compliments from family, friends and strangers on how vocal and intelligent she is, I know I can't take all the credit for that because Make Way for Books has helped tremendously with throughout her development and their organization is something I will forever be grateful for.

Elizabeth229

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

This program has helped our family to learn to LOVE BOOKS! I have to children ages 6 and 3 and they love attending to story times at events held by Make Way for Books. At a professional level, the staff is knowledgeable, attentive and super fun for the kids and adults too!!! Thank you to everyone that makes this possible!!!

Amanda201

Client Served

Rating: 5

I can't even begin to describe the wonderful experiences that are provided by MWFB. We just celebrated our first year as make way for books students. I say we because not only has my son benefited and learned from this program, I too have learned a lot. In my experiences with MWFB we have attended the story time classes available at the location and also attended multiple Raising a Reader classes available at local elementary schools. My son and I enjoy these raising a reader classes because we are able to take home a bag of books each week with 5-6 books that are new and geared towards his age group. The hour long class is taught by 3-4 different teachers who truly have a good passion to teach young students and families how important reading is. My daughter who is 6 years old also benefits from the book bag when we are home because she is a bilingual student and our book bags are filled with Spanish and English books. Within 7 weeks we get to read about 35-40 new books without going to a library or spending money on purchasing them. The program also offers a complementary selection of healthy snacks that we also enjoy. A couple months ago we had the privilege of meeting the singer song writer Jose Luis Orozco at a private party at the Make Way for Books Location which has been another moment in our learning experience that we will never forget. We got to sing and dance and enjoy our evening together with the brilliant artist. Ive recommended the program to our friends and family and just by sharing photos on social media, I've been able to show my community how beneficial this program has been not only for my son but for our family as a whole. I could go on and on about our positive experiences with teachers and staff from make way for books. I couldn't thank the program enough for all of the enriching moments we've shared.

Previous Stories
1

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

Our family has participated for about 6 months, and in this 6 months we have read over 50 new books and we were also gifted with five books to keep. We are so impressed with the level of attention and activies that make way for books provides us. Can't wait to keep participating.