*Be sure to catch us on Facebook Live today, June 5, beginning at 11:25 a.m. for all the festivities!
MONTGOMERY — ALABAMA 200 and Reach Out and Read-Alabama (ROR-AL) are partnering this summer in celebration of the state’s bicentennial and the 10th Annual Rx for Summer Reading with Alabama, My Home Sweet Home by Charles Ghigna. ROR-AL program sites across the state are providing copies of the books and hosting fun Alabama-themed activities, as well as providing a “prescription” to become involved in the reading program at their local libraries. The statewide Rx for Summer Reading partnership will kick off on Wednesday, June 5, at 11:30 a.m. at Partners in Pediatrics with Jeana Ross, Secretary of Early Childhood Education, reading the book to those in attendance.
“We are proud to support Reach Out and Read–Alabama in providing opportunities for families to promote children’s literacy starting at birth,” said Secretary Ross. “High quality, coordinated early literacy efforts will help us prepare all Alabama children to be successful in school.”
In addition to supporting bicentennial events focused on the state’s rich history, ALABAMA 200 is heavily invested in bolstering education programming initiatives for all citizens. Partnering with ROR-AL speaks to a desire to support future generations, creating a point of pride for all Alabamians.
“As we celebrate the state’s bicentennial, we look back to our past, but we also look to our future,” said Jay Lamar, Executive Director of the Alabama Bicentennial Commission. “We want the next hundred years to be all they can be, which means nurturing a love of learning and achievement in our young people. Reach Out and Read-Alabama certainly does that.”
Charles Ghigna, better known to some as Father Goose, debuted Alabama, My Home Sweet Home, a bicentennial book for young readers at the 2018 Alabama Book Festival. The work features a bear cub named Camellia who accompanies readers as they encounter famous Alabamians like Helen Keller, Rosa Parks and Jesse Owens in their respective time and place in history.
The evidence-based Reach Out and Read program builds on the unique relationship between parents and medical providers to develop critical early reading skills in children, beginning in infancy. During regular visits with the doctor, families grow to understand the powerful role they play in supporting their children’s development, early language and literacy at home.
Currently, 55 of Alabama’s pediatric practices and clinics serve as ROR-AL program sites in 27 counties, impacting 40 percent of the state’s children under the age of five.