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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EIN 23-2656376
415-563-3362
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Community Reviews

Rating: 5 stars  

I actually came across the READ Center while hunting for an apartment here in Kathmandu. It has been one of my very fortunate finds. I have been volunteering with the organization for the past 6 months, assisting with their media & communications. I have been given the opportunity to prepare impact stories, articles for their blog and to assist in proof-reading reports. I have been able to travel into the field on a number of occasions to Nuwakot, Badikhel and Panuati, and this has given me invaluable work experiences. Not to mention the office is filled with a terrific staff led by Sanjana Shrestha, and in my opinion, is really making inroads in empowering the communities of rural and remote Nepal.

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Rating: 5 stars  

I became associated with READ Nepal through READ Center at Tikapur. Agriculture has been our profession since many generations and my family depends on agriculture for survival. But, past few years, the productivity of crops and vegetables were not good due to pest infestation. Meanwhile, I learned about Practical Answers Service- a joint program of READ Nepal and Practical Action where local queries of local community people are addressed. So, I sent queries related to agriculture and pest infestation. Then, I was called to participate in agriculture interaction program organized by the Tikapur READ center where other local farmers with the similar problems were present. I learned to make homemade pesticide and also off-seasonal vegetable farming. With this, there is drastic improvement in vegetable and crop production and consequently, improved my earning. I am happy to be associated with READ Nepal !

How would you describe the help you got from this organization?

Life-changing

How likely are you to recommend this organization to a friend?

Definitely

How do you feel you were treated by this organization?

Very Well

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2012

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Rating: 5 stars  

The READ Center provided me with training on Bee keeping. I am now a successful entrepreneur. The READ Center’s livelihood skills development program proves that it is entirely dedicated towards the day to day survival of the individuals of the community. It shows that the READ Center is very directly involved in our problems, and understands our immediate necessities rather than ignoring it and is helping us get away from our desperation.

How would you describe the help you got from this organization?

Life-changing

How likely are you to recommend this organization to a friend?

Definitely

How do you feel you were treated by this organization?

Very Well

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2013

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Rating: 5 stars  

As I participate in the women’s cooperative, I have gained a lot of firsthand knowledge about the economic status of the community members in my village. I have learned their problems and I have tried my best to provide them with solutions given our resources and knowledge. The READ Center’s decision to make a women’s cooperative is highly beneficial: first it provides the community with financial options, and second, as the cooperative is comprised entirely of women, the community can be assured that a dedicated and empathizing group is working towards their benefit and prosperity. READ has demonstrated that women are capable of performing roles that require transparency and accountability.

How would you describe the help you got from this organization?

Life-changing

How likely are you to recommend this organization to a friend?

Definitely

How do you feel you were treated by this organization?

Very Well

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2013

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Rating: 5 stars  

READ Nepal’s activities in our community have really impacted our lives in a positive way. I am glad that READ has been able to impact the whole community in a deep and influential way. After taking the adult literacy classes conducted at the READ Center, I have learnt the importance of education and I am committed to educating my children in the future. I have realized what I was missing in my own childhood. Education in my childhood would have made me look at the world in a different way, and I regret some of the mistakes I made in my life and attribute them to a lack of education. I am really dedicated to providing my children with an education that will enable them to be socially conscious individuals. I felt that the READ Center provides a great place to receive informal, socially conscious education which is really adapted to the realities of our poor, rural community.

How would you describe the help you got from this organization?

Life-changing

How likely are you to recommend this organization to a friend?

Definitely

How do you feel you were treated by this organization?

Very Well

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2013

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Rating: 5 stars  

I worked as volunteer in READ information and Resource Center, READ Center at Kathmandu, for 3 months. During the volunteer period, I worked as a facilitator for the adult literacy class and worked with women. This helped me realized that education and literacy is a powerful tool to change the women's status in a country like Nepal and I am glad to be a part of this initiative. I also got the opportunity to work with children and poor people. My early conviction that library is a repository of books have been proved wrong. "Libraries are vehicles for educational, social and economical transformation" and READ has been doing a fantastic work in transforming poor communities of Nepal. I am really proud to be a part of READ !

Would you volunteer for this group again?

Definitely

For the time you spent, how much of an impact did you feel your work or activity had?

A lot

Did the organization use your time wisely?

Very Well

Would you recommend this group to a friend?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2012

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Rating: 5 stars  

I graduated from the Early Childhood Development (ECD) program from READ Nepal supported CLRC, 3 years ago. It was a very positive experience for me. One of the main things I remember is that I got to meet, play with and interact with a lot of children my age. I am really good friends with some of the children I met at ECD. It was great to have a place to interact with other children my age, and now that we have gotten older, we have a shared understanding of the importance of a READ Center in our community. I believe that the focus on childhood that READ is dedicated to shows their level of long-term commitment towards the community.

How would you describe the help you got from this organization?

A lot

How likely are you to recommend this organization to a friend?

Definitely

How do you feel you were treated by this organization?

Very Well

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2013

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Rating: 5 stars  

I am the president of Jhuwani Center; READ supported CLRC. Before READ came to our village, I wasn’t satisfied with the level of contribution that I could provide for the rest of my community. I used to feel like my life was being wasted, and that my privileges were not being put to good use. However, due to READ’s goal of increasing community participation, I was provided with a lot of promising opportunities to utilize my leadership in a positive manner. READ gives the community members a lot of say into its activities, and is willing to patiently listen to any and all opinions regarding its activities. I believe this has greatly increased the sense of self-worth among the community members.

How does this organization compare with others in the same sector?

Very Well

How much of an impact do you think this organization has?

Life-changing

Will you recommend this organization to others?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2013

Was this review helpful? 
Rating: 5 stars  

1 person found this review helpful

I volunteered for three months with READ Nepal, and I couldn't be more pleased with my experience. I spent a summer working with READ's women's empowerment programs, and during that time I was afforded the opportunity to visit several Community Library and Resource Centers. I was so impressed by what I found. READ Nepal does not just build libraries in rural areas; these centers are so much more than book-lending institutions. Each CLRC is tailored to suit the needs of its specific community, but every one contains a number of programs to address poverty through multiple means. These programs emphasize education, livelihood training, health and healthcare, women's empowerment, economic empowerment, and more. It's almost unbelievable how many dynamic, life-changing programs READ Nepal implements; progress in just one of those areas would be impressive, but READ manages to address them all successfully.
I spoke to several women through interviews, and every single one of them was so grateful for READ's women's empowerment programs. All of them could list dozens of ways they had benefitted or their lives had improved from the presence of a CLRC in their area. These women were living proof that the READ model works.

Not only are the CLRCs impressive, but I was also extremely satisfied with the leadership and staff at the main office in Kathmandu, which is where I was based. Everyone was so friendly, helpful, and passionate about the work they do. I had nothing but positive experiences working alongside such a hardworking group of people, and I'm very grateful for the opportunity.

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

I have no criticisms to make, and I only wish they'll be as successful as they've been so far in expanding their work to reach even more communities.

Would you volunteer for this group again?

Definitely

For the time you spent, how much of an impact did you feel your work or activity had?

A lot

Did the organization use your time wisely?

Very Well

Would you recommend this group to a friend?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2013

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Rating: 5 stars  

1 person found this review helpful

" Community driven, controlled and managed development process are most responsive to the aspirations of the people, cost effective and sustainable in the long range. READ Nepal is a living example of it."

Will you volunteer or donate to this organization beyond what is required of board members?

Definitely

How much of an impact do you think this organization has?

Life-changing

Will you tell others about this organization?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2013

Was this review helpful?