READ (Rural Education and Development) Global

Rating: 4.82 stars   56 reviews

Issues: Education, Human Services, Economic Development, Microfinance

Location: PO Box 29286 San Francisco CA 94129 USA

Mission: READ Global believes empowering rural communities is critical to alleviating global poverty. We envision a world where individuals, families and entire communities have access to the knowledge, resources and opportunities necessary to build more prosperous futures. READ partners with communities in rural Asia to create vibrant places to live and thrive. Our proven and replicable model focuses on Community Library and Resource Centers as a vehicle for social and economic transformation. Combining education, enterprise and community development, READ collaborates with rural communities to build these centers and seed for-profit enterprises to ensure long-term maintenance and success.
Results: 1.8 rural villagers have access to READ Centers. 125 villages worldwide are served by READ Centers. 4,500 books, on average, in each READ Center. 57 READ Centers established to date. 90 for-profit enterprises sustain READ Centers. (2011)
Target demographics: Low-income rural communities in South Asia
Direct beneficiaries per year: 4,683 villagers learn livelihood skills, 2,002 villagers learn to read, 1.1 million villagers access the Internet, 1,248 receive computer training, 4,227 receive health training, 2,639 women receive legal rights training, and more
Geographic areas served: Rural South Asia (Bhutan, India and Nepal)
Programs: Literacy, livelihood skills, women's empowerment, information and communications technology (ICT), health, environment, legal rights

2014 Top-Rated Nonprofit
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Community Reviews

Role: Professional with expertise in this field
Rating: 5 stars  

I have been using my expertise in Art as a therapy at Read India past 6 months & have been associated with Read past couple of years to train the rural people in parenting & even empowering them through art. It has been the most satisfying experience & work at Read especially because of its humanistic approach towards their vision. The visits & hard word of the Director & the other leaders, specialists & staff into the most challenging areas of the country to be able help the rural people with education & including them in the society by empowering all age groups is commendable! Each member speaks the language of compassion & concern! The country Director's efforts & guidance makes Read a very knowledgeable place to work with! I wish & pray for their success in their vision!

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

Read already is doing a great job so I would love it they add 'complete well being' activities in all their centres like counseling, IQ assessments, Art studio as there are many hidden artists in rural that needs to be tapped & Parenting training above all. A complete Holistic care!

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2014

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Rating: 4 stars  

I have been associated with READ for six months now. I'm glad I had the opportunity to work with the core team of READ India since I could see the dedication with which the team works towards creating proper livelihood to the rural people. The passion which the team shows in the work is what I have been exposed to and it is very inspiring to work with them. They are also too humble to boast their success stories. Even during my short association with READ I observed lots of parallel programs happening at various community centers and almost all of them were converted into successful programs since the beneficiaries were huge in each of the program.

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Rating: 5 stars  

I have been involved in READ Nepal's programs since early 2000 in meetings as well as a library trainer.
I know this institution very well and appreciate its works very much.
Services catered by READ is very appreciable because of community empowerment and participatory involvement of rural people. READ not only establish and run libraries but also organize different humanitarian development activities at the community level.

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Rating: 5 stars  

I worked as a volunteer in READ Nepal for six months and during my volunteering time, I had many learning experiences. It was my first time working with local communities and I thank READ Nepal for giving me an opportunity to work as a volunteer. READ Centers are vehicles for community change and development. It was great fun working with READ and I am very proud to be a part of READ.

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Rating: 5 stars  

I have recently joined READ Center at Lalitpur Nepal as a part of my Bachelor's final year's internship. I am very impressed with the activities and services provided by the Center. I found READ's working modality unique and awesome as it is creating the positive impact in the lives of rural communities. READ's intervention reaches every part of community irrespective of age, gender, caste and ethnicity and I am happy to see how READ's community libraries is working to bring and engage the whole community in community development initiative. READ's community libraries have changed my perception of library, the READ Libraries are more than libraries, they are indeed the center of community engagement and development. I am proud to be associated with READ Nepal through its Center and in future, I would like to commit my time and creativity in READ's work.

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Rating: 5 stars  

Growing up in Bangladesh, I was always keenly aware of the lifechanging difference education and access to knowledge can make and transform a village, a city, a community - a generation. When I came across READ I was immediately attuned to its mission, vision and commitment to making this difference in South Asia - cemented by my visits to READ centers in Nepal and working with READ's passionate, driven, superbly qualified staff and Board members. What especially makes me incredibly excited about the READ model are the programs for providing locally relevant vocational training and tools for sustainable enterprises that build upon books and internet access in each of these centers.

READ is a truly innovative organization and I'm grateful for the opportunity to work alongside READ, its staff and the rural communities we serve.

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Rating: 5 stars  

I joined the Board of Directors of READ Global last year and I have been very impressed at the commitment and capabilities of both the headquarters and field staff. READ is doing impressive work in areas of significant unmet need and is making a huge difference in empowering individuals, families and communities. The model for READ's resource centers is smart and sustainable and contributes to the local sense of ownership and enthusiasm. High marks all around!

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Rating: 5 stars  

I worked as a volunteer with READ Global in 2014 in the field offices in Nepal, India, and Bhutan. This was truly the experience of a lifetime for me. My coworkers in the country offices in the capital cities were great to work with, and passionate about READ's mission. It was amazing to see the impact of the work that has been accomplished firsthand by visiting the community libraries in rural areas. I also had the opportunity to get to know some of the people in READ villages and hear about how community libraries have improved their lives and communities.

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2014

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Rating: 5 stars  

I spent my summer as a volunteer intern at the READ Global office in San Francisco because I was so inspired by their model and work in India, Nepal, and Bhutan. READ not only encourages literacy and economic empowerment in rural villages but also focuses on the sustainability of their programs so that each village takes ownership of their Center and the impact is compounded in future generations. It was these aspects that drew me to this internship, and I am so glad to have learned even more about READ's work during the summer as I researched programs and wrote blogs and posts for the website and social media. I truly enjoyed my internship at READ and consider this to be one of the best organizations working in the field of community empowerment around the world.

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Rating: 5 stars  

I've been working alongside READ for the past 18 months now and it has been one of the most rewarding projects of my life. No other organization that I've ever worked with has a model that manages to capture the unique strengths and culture of the individual communities they serve. The diversity of services found at each READ centre, built upon a solid common foundation of information access, is a model I try and replicate in all my other work. Every community that supports a READ centre is different, and the centres themselves reflect this in a such a genuine and harmonious way. This is truly an amazing hybridization of grassroots development. The staff in READ's 3 country offices and the San Francisco office are all a joy to work with. I look forward to every conversation with them. Amazing people doing amazing work. What more could you ask for in a nonprofit?

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