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2014 Top-Rated Nonprofit

READ (Rural Education and Development) Global

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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Economic Development, Education, Human Service Organizations, Human Services, Libraries, Microfinance, Rural Economic Development

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: 2.3 rural villagers have access to READ Centers. 300 villages worldwide are served by READ Centers. 4,500 books, on average, in each READ Center. 97 READ Centers established to date. 130 for-profit enterprises sustain READ Centers. (2016)

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

Community Stories

5 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

Client Served

Rating: 5

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 !

Client Served

Rating: 5

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.

Client Served

Rating: 5

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.

Client Served

Rating: 5

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.

Client Served

Rating: 5

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.