Room To Read

Rating: 4.93 stars   59 reviews

Issues: Education, International

Location: 111 Sutter St. 16th Floor San Francisco CA 94104 USA

Mission: Room to Read seeks to transform the lives of millions of children in developing countries by focusing on literacy and gender equality in education. Working in collaboration with local communities, partner organizations and governments, we develop literacy skills and a habit of reading among primary school children, and support girls to complete secondary school with the relevant life skills to succeed in school and beyond.
Results: Schools constructed: 1,442 Libraries established: 11,246 Books published: 553 Books distributed: 9.4 million Girls supported: 10,590 Children benefited: 5.1 million
Target demographics: Students in need of library resources and local language reading materials; and Girls at-risk of dropping out of secondary school
Direct beneficiaries per year: 5.1 million children in primary and secondary school
Geographic areas served: Bangladesh, Cambodia, India, Laos, Nepal, Sri Lanka, South Africa, Vietnam, and Zambia
Programs: Room to Read focuses on two objectives: Literacy and Gender Equality in Education. Our Literacy program enables primary school children to become independent readers: • Room to Read focuses its efforts on developing reading skills and the habit of reading in primary school aged children because literacy is the foundation for all future learning. We do this primarily by establishing multi-lingual libraries, increasing access to age-appropriate and culturally relevant reading materials (including publishing our own original local language children’s books), and improving the child friendliness of the school environment. We’ve recently increased our support for reading instruction including creating materials and providing training for teachers. Our Girls’ Education program supports girls to complete secondary school with the skills necessary to negotiate key life decisions: • Room to Read focuses on girls transitioning to or in secondary school because that is where the biggest – and most permanent – gaps in gender equality in education take place. We do this primarily through supporting girls to attend school, providing female mentoring and creating more girl-friendly school environments. We’ve recently added more emphasis on teaching life skills to girls so they will finish school and maximize their opportunities.
2014 Top-Rated Nonprofit
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EIN 91-2003533
415-561-3331
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Community Reviews

Rating: 5 stars  

I've been involved with Room to Read for many years both as a volunteer and a donor. My background is in publishing so helping to improve literacy in third world countries is something dear to my heart. Room to Read is extremely well run and has been able to help millions of underprivileged young people throughout the world. The trickle down effect of this will be immense in years to come. Kaybat

 
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Rating: 5 stars  

I first became aware of Room to Read through a friend who initially volunteered with them, and is now a Chapter Leader. I found John Wood's book to be inspirational, and have lent it to friends to spread the word. I initially fundraised for Room to Read by running a marathon, and recently have contributed part of my wedding gifts to them. I have chosen my donations to go to Girl's Education as I am a fervent believer in equal opportunities in education which unfortunately are not reflected everywhere.
Room to Read is an efficient, effective charity that follows through on its promises, from the very small to the world changing.

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

Expand in Africa

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When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2014

 
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Rating: 5 stars  

I've been involved with Room to Read for over 10 years. Having worked with John Wood at Microsoft, I never doubted Room to Read's ability to achieve -- and often exceed -- every ambitious goal they've ever set. That's one reason why I've been involved for so long, but there's so many others... Room to Read is incredibly effective & efficient, there's amazing transparency and incredible dedication & passion in the professionals and volunteers involved with the organisation. Most importantly for me, the way Room to Read engages with the communities they work in is nothing short of inspirational . Yes Room to Read builds schools, libraries, and give scholarships but for me their most enduring legacy is hope and optimism. That's why I am such a HUGE fan.

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When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2014

 
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Rating: 5 stars  

I invested in the building of four separate libraries in Cambodia since 2010. I was attracted to Room to Read mainly due to the self help model where 15% of the funds required came from the local community giving them ownership and pride in the project - ensuring sustainability.
Education of the youth in these developing countries, in my view, gives the best bang for your buck. (Teach a man to fish)
The fact that I was able to dedicate each library to a loved one with a dedication plaque on the inside wall, was the deal closer.
I visited Cambodia in Feb 2014 with my wife and so so happy with the local Room to Read organisation I invested in another library. Amazing work by Room to Read.

Dave - Sydney, Australia

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

Send each donor of a library a framed photo of the finished library so they could hang on their wall inviting their friends to also donate.

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Definitely

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Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2014

 
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Rating: 5 stars  

I had the opportunity to visit a Room to Read school in India and all I can say is WOW!!! To see the impact that the organization makes on so many children's lives every day is truly amazing. Very well-run org with high quality staff doing great work. Happy to be a supporter of their efforts to increase literacy around the world.

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Definitely

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Definitely

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Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2013

 
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Rating: 5 stars  

I discovered the work of Room to Read when I first saw the film "Half the Sky," and I started to follow their work. I love where they work, what they work on and, in particular, their impact on bringing young girls access to education.

I am a donor and will be for the rest of my life. These guys are meeting a serious need.

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

Just help it expand and deepen its penetration.

Was your donation impactful?

Definitely

How likely is it that you would recommend that a friend donate to this group?

Definitely

How likely are you to donate to this group again?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2013

 
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