Hello RAR staff and board of directors,
Raising A Reader is outraged by the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis. The recent horrible acts of injustice and racism in New York, Kentucky, Minnesota and Georgia are not novel. We stand with the black community, and we firmly believe that Black Lives Matter. Racial inequality and racism destroy the social fabric of our country and casts a dark shadow on the future of our children. We must stand together and recognize that, as Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. said, “injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.”
For the past 20 years, Raising A Reader has strived to close the opportunity gap for under resourced children and their families, specifically in communities in color across the country. It is our belief and hope that education and literacy can be a cornerstone in creating equality and opportunity for all. It is abundantly clear to me that we need to double down our efforts in to better serve communities of color and the future of America.
Our call to action includes:
- Incorporating anti-racist and trauma curriculum into our train the trainer model so that we can better support our network of leaders in the field;
- Creating a direct line to parents so that we are creating parent engagement tools by and for parents of color;
- Seeking to align our work with the agendas of long standing advocacy groups like National Black Child Development Institute and Black Women’s Health Imperative;
- Supporting RAR staff by encouraging the use of flex time and volunteer time to serve, demonstrate, rest or reflect;
- Closing RAR one day a month in June, July, and August for imposed mental health/rest days for staff.
This agenda will expand and grow, but it is where we will start.
Raising A Reader stands firm in its unwavering commitment to equality, diversity, inclusivity and improving the lives of children in all communities across the United States. And we vehemently oppose racial injustice in all its forms.
In loving kindness,
President and CEO