“South Jamaica Reads is a living testament to the power of collaboration. To improve reading proficiency and close the achievement gap, we need all the horses pulling in the same direction and in South Jamaica Reads we have just that: a host of superb literacy organizations coordinating services, connecting families to multiple supports, sharing best practices, and enlisting and inspiring community involvement. Is it ambitious? Of course – but also exciting and we think very promising.”

-Rick Smith, President, The Pinkerton Foundation

Strong literacy skills are a crucial component to having a productive life, and literacy development begins at birth. Studies show that children who are successful readers by third grade are more likely to do well in school, graduate from high school, and have successful careers as adults. An investment in early literacy is an investment in the success and sustainability of a community.
South Jamaica Reads, a pilot project of the New York City Literacy Network, is a collaboration of eight organizations working together to improve literacy outcomes for children in one of New York City’s most at-risk communities – South Jamaica, Queens. Through these partnerships, services are concentrated to give children and families a range of resources needed to support literacy development for children birth through fifth grade in schools, homes, libraries, healthcare facilities, and the surrounding community.