MISSION Our mission is to foster early literacy bonds between children and their parents to ensure that all young children from Aspen to Parachute develop a love of books and the skills to become successful readers.

WHY EARLY READING MATTERS “We will never close the achievement gap, we will never solve our dropout crisis, we will never break the cycle of poverty that afflicts so many children if we don’t make sure that all our students learn to read.” – Ralph Smith, Executive Vice President, Annie E. Casey Foundation A love of books and learning begins at birth, and parents are their child’s first and most important teacher. Between birth and age five, a child’s brain is making trillions of neural connections, more than any other time in their life, and the experiences they have in these early years build the foundation for all future learning. One of the most beneficial activities parents can do to prepare their children for academic success is to read aloud with them from day one. Reading together stimulates healthy brain development, develops vocabulary, builds attention span, and inspires imagination. The time snuggling and cuddling together with books also strengthens the loving bond between parent and child. It sounds easy, but finding the time and motivation to read together can be challenging for families. Many parents work long hours at multiple jobs just to provide for basic needs. Or they may feel limited in their ability to influence their child’s academic success due to their own lack of access to formal education. Many parents did not grow up in a culture of literacy, but they believe in the power of education as a means for their child to achieve a better life, and they are devoted to giving their child a bright future. Raising A Reader brings a message of hope, joy, and limitless opportunities for learning to parents who are doing the best they can but may not have the resources to make the most of their children’s earliest years. Promoting and elevating parent success is embedded in the DNA of Raising A Reader. We encourage parents to inspire their children to be the agents of their own learning and the authors of their own stories - stories that will be celebrated and passed down from generation to generation.

OUR PROGRAMS Red Book Bags promote parent-child bonding and increase read-aloud time at home by providing families of preschool and kindergarten children with more than 100 different classics and new titles during the year. Each week, children take home a different red bag filled with four books to borrow and return them for a new bag the following week. Bolsitas Rojas/ Little Red Bags fill a need in our most underserved communities. Our parent-child reading clubs bring together families whose children are not enrolled in preschool for weekly sessions in our local libraries. RAR staff model positive attitudes toward books and encourage parent engagement and positive literacy behaviors at home, which include the rotation of our red book bags. 1-2-3 Let’s Read provides children with a free storybook each month, along with bookrelated activities for parents and teachers. The books and activities create a bridge between home and school to foster parents’ participation in supporting their child’s learning both in the classroom and at home.

Motheread empowers mothers who have had limited access to formal education to realize their potential as their child’s first and most important teacher. Facilitated by RAR staff, this intensive eightweek program offers a supportive and nurturing environment while promoting and reinforcing positive family literacy behaviors at home through the sharing of children’s storybooks. Parent Education Sessions inspire parents to read with their children every day. RAR staff provide information about early brain and oral-language development, and discuss strategies to build language skills, foster love of books, manage screen time, and make reading together fun. Blue Bag Library Days introduce preschoolers to their local libraries so that they and their families can access books and other free resources during the summer months and beyond. Children receive their own Raising A Reader library book bag and a library card to check out their first books.

OUR COMMUNITY & FAMILIES We Reached 1,428 Families in 2018-19 From Aspen to DeBeque, Raising A Reader served families across 90 miles, in four counties and five school districts. 1,428 Families Served Numbers Per Town Silt 40 Parachute 322 DeBeque 19 Rifle 323 Carbondale 77 Number of Families Served Per Program Red Book Bag: 996 Bolsitas Rojas/Little Red Bags: 88 123 Let’s Read: 325 Motheread: 19 moms/28 children Blue Bag Library Days: 675 Parent Education: 800+ El Jebel 7 Basalt 134 Glenwood Springs 226 New Castle 109 Snowmass Village 34 Aspen 137 Many parents commute long distances between work and home because employment opportunities tend to be concentrated in areas that lack affordable housing. Some parents also work multiple jobs to make ends meet, making it hard for families to find time to read together. 44% of RAR children receive free or reduced price lunch 47% of RAR families speak mostly Spanish at home 50% of RAR parents have a high school education or less

IMPACT More Time Reading Together Parent pre-and-post survey data show that families increase the amount of time reading together while participating in our programs. 51% of RED BOOK BAG families spent 31% more time reading together Families whose primary language is Spanish spent 47% more time reading together 1-2-3 LET’S READ parents report that their child was excited about the new books and that they read together more 93% increase in MOTHEREAD moms reading to their chilren every day Possible through Partnership 93 CLASSROOMS in 26 schools 8 COUNTY LIBRARIES 146 GENEROUS DONORS

FINANCIALS CONTRIBUTIONS Foundations Earned Income Individuals Businesses Government In-Kind/Other Total Revenue EXPENSES Program Administrative Total Expenses Foundations 47% $ 109,472 $ 33,428 $ 29,950 $ 28,622 $ 28,400 $ 3,449 $ 233,321 Administrative 14% $ 183,772 $ 33,802 $ 217,574 Program 86% Earned Income 14% In Kind/Other 2% Government 12% Individuals 13% Businesses 12% 2018-2019 BOARD OF DIRECTORS Angie Davlyn, President Kelly Boggs, Treasurer Dr. Anne Lorenson, Secretary Eric Musselman Hilary Drummond Jamie Nims Brett Lear

DONORS We are deeply grateful for the support of all our donors over the years. Please note that the list below reflects only those who gave during the fiscal year July 1, 2018 - June 30, 2019. t $20,000+ Anonymous $10,000 - $19,999 Aspen Community Foundation Buell Foundation Chevron Kids First Pettit Foundation Pitkin County $5,000 - $9,999 Anonymous Anschutz Family Foundation Garfield County Board of County Commissioners Melony and Adam Lewis United Way of Eagle River Valley $2,500 - $4,999 Alpenglow Foundation Alpine Bank Aspen Thrift Shop Bessie Minor Swift Foundation City of Aspen Fred and Elli Iselin Foundation J. Robert Young Foundation Laura and Michael Kaplan Bill and Sheila Lambert Rifle Community Foundation Rotary Club of Glenwood Springs Frank and Tamara Woods $1,000 - $2,499 Aspen Skiing Company Family Fund Kelly and Emily Boggs Castaways Foundation City of Glenwood Springs LuLu Colby Gallegos Corporation Holy Cross Energy Round-up Foundation Town of Basalt Umbrella Roofing Robin Van Norman and Jim Vickroy Wells Fargo Foundation $500 - $999 Susan Dampier Ernie and Lacy Fyrwald Grand Valley Kiwanis Foundation Mt. Callahan Community Fund Mandy and John Murray Robert and Marci Musser Jayne and Bill Poss Terri and Sam Potter Rifle Chamber of Commerce SGM Terra Energy Partners Town of Carbondale Walmart - Glenwood Springs $100 - $499 Daniel Adams Aspen Reprographics Bridget and Rick Balentine Rick Blauvelt and Candace Goodwin Richard Blauvelt Carl J. Ciani Insurance Agency Anonymous Deborah Dawson & Dean Gordon Katelyn Derderian Dave & Ann Nicholson Greg and Kathy Feinsinger Deborah and Scott Fifer Tish Filiss Donna Fisher and Skip Behrhorst Amy French K T Gazunis Harriman Construction

“More than all the academic benefits, the most important thing about reading aloud to a child is giving them the gift of the joy of reading.” - Ernest Morrell Andy and Jody Hecht Peter Helburn Judith Huston Vicki and Sam Johnson Anonymous Glen and Tracy Larner Nancy and Barton Levin William Lightstone Dr. Anne Lorenson Katie and Ryan Mackley Mason & Morse Real Estate Brendan Matthias Lynda Palevsky Marci and Robert Pattillo Courtney and Dan Petre Peter and Mary Ellen Rogers Dr. Katha Rossein and Dr. Ron Razzore Rebecca Ruland and Terry Shanahan Linda and Jay Sandrich Marina Sharpe Amelia Shelley Lorraine Spector Jennifer Springer Kim Stacey Betsy Suerth Pam Yarus and Theron Russell Jennifer Zetah Up to $100 20/20 Eyecare Anonymous William Anschuetz Bookbinders Basalt Kim Brown Georgia Chamberlain Nicole Christianson Lisa Dancing Light Erika Delak Terrie and Dennis Drake Hilary Drummond Ed and Vivian Elbert Siobhan Farey Nancy Frizell Stacey and Rob Gavrell Darrell and Judy Green Ruth Harrison Marianne Keating Wewer Keohane Kathleen Kime Tate LaFountain Pamela Lauman Christine and Andrew Light Marian McDonough Sharon McLin Theresa Miller Julie Olson Connie Orcutt Carol Pasternak Carrie Podl Diane and Murray Reynolds Eliza Robison Tami Solondz Bernard Sultan Saundra Swanson Blythe Tardie Robin Tolan Donna Ward Michael and Dorothy Wells Garland and Anne White Susan and Vincent Yoder Gary and Thelma Zabel In Kind Aspen Times Basalt Regional Library Bookbinders Basalt Ramona Bruland Garfield County Libraries Glenwood Springs Post Independent La Tricolor McDonalds Mountain Parent Magazine Pitkin County Library Liz Shugart Sopris Sun Frank Taverna

“My two-year-old daughter became very verbal, more active, and learned a lot of new words. I believe the process of reading to our children is very important, and it motivates us mothers to connect with our children.“ - New Castle Motheread Mom

For more information or to support us, please contact Cindy Blachly | Executive Director 817 Colorado Avenue #205 Glenwood Springs, CO 81602 970-230-9117 | cindy@rar4kids.org | www.rar4kids.org Success starts at home with a parent, a child, and a book.

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