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Reading to Kids News
October 15, 2020

Dear Friends of Reading to Kids,

Last Saturday we held our biggest Zoom reading clubs so far! 345 kids, 93 volunteers, and 36 teachers & staff joined us for our October 10th "Halloween, Magic, & Monsters" reading clubs!

Several of our volunteers also got into the spirit by wearing costumes, which you can see in the below photo (click on it for a larger version).

Volunteers, many in costume, at our Zoom lunch gathering after Saturday's reading clubs

Our founding principal, Raul Fernandez, who is also a member of the Westside Wizards, provided a video magic show for all the kids at each of our partner schools, allowing us to continue our tradition of bringing magic to our October reading clubs! You can share his show with anyone who enjoys magic!

Raul and his magic video


Reading to Kids Annual Fund Drive

We extend a huge thank you to everyone who helped us kick off our 2020 Annual Fund Drive, including 25 volunteers this past Saturday who together donated $1,535!

The names of the new donors have already been added to our 2020 Annual Fund Drive page, and here are the school competition stats so far:


Highest percentage of volunteers who donated at the Oct. 10th reading clubs:
1st: Politi with an incredible 50%!
2nd: MacArthur Park (45%!)
3rd: Los Angeles (40%!)

Highest dollar amount raised at the Oct. 10th reading clubs:
1st: Esperanza ($600!)
2nd: MacArthur Park ($300)
3rd: Politi ($200)

All of the above donations will be doubled or tripled by our matching donors, and their offers still stand!

That's right, you can still double or triple your donation and change the above standings by donating this week!

Our overall goal by the end of the year is to raise $60,000 from 600 donors.

Here's how you can help, with your donations being counted towards the school competition:

1) Make a pledge to donate by check or donate online today by visiting our 2020 Annual Fund Drive. Contributions of any amount are greatly appreciated!

2) Show your support by asking friends and family to contribute! Visit our 2020 Annual Fund Drive page and look under the "Help us Fundraise!" header for resources, including information on creating your own personalized fundraising page on Facebook, our handy donor sheet for raising money with your friends and co-workers, tips for fundraising, and so much more.

Once they know about Reading to Kids, many of your friends and family will want to donate - we just need you to ask!

Also, if your workplace matches donations to nonprofits, please share with them your donation, and ask them to consider matching it. In this way you double your donation and share with others your enthusiasm for Reading to Kids!

Reading to Kids Annual Fund Drive


Virtual reading clubs count towards our milestones just as much as our face-to-face reading clubs!

Though we couldn't provide printed milestone certificates to them, we honored these 10 volunteers by sharing their milestone certificates at their schools' Site Coordinator debrief sessions after the clubs!

• Alexandrina Andre, Alyson Beckman, & Mark Ortiz (10 reading clubs each)
• Paul Heinzman (20 reading clubs)
• Dalena Nguyen & Racheal Caswell (30 reading clubs each)

   Pictured below are the certificates for our four largest milestones:

• Andrea Smoot (80 reading clubs, mostly as a Site Coordinator at Magnolia Elementary)
• Jennifer Grannis (90 reading clubs)
• Tami Tarnow (100 reading clubs)
• Jason Axe (230 reading clubs, he's one of our founders)

4 October 2020 Milestone Certificates

By joining us for her 100th reading club, Tami will also soon be the proud recipient of our 100th reading club magnetic name badge! She's our 31st volunteer to earn one!

Tami Tarnow 100th Name Badge


We are eager for next month's virtual reading clubs on November 14th, but first need to recruit enough teachers to be Zoom hosts for them.

In about three weeks when we confirm enough teacher hosts, we will then open our RSVP system for those "Seasons & the Natural World" reading clubs!

So, please keep checking www.readingtokids.org to see if you can submit an RSVP!


Volunteers checking in with their Site Coordinators on Zoom

For our virtual reading clubs we need experienced volunteers to help train volunteers to use Zoom or be a second or third virtual Site Coordinator in our Zoom reading clubs for any of our schools.

Being a Site Coordinator guarantees you a (non-reading) spot at our next reading clubs, so please e-mail us at info@readingtokids.org if you can help us create wonderful reading clubs!


Santa at Alta Loma reading clubs

It may seem a bit early for Santa, but we need to start planning early this year for how we can bring Santa to the December 12th reading clubs!

At least once in your life you should experience being Santa or one of his helpers - and here is a unique opportunity!

Since we generally have 36 teacher hosts each month, we need four people willing to be Santa, Mrs. Claus, or an assisting elf for our reading clubs on December 12th.

We've had Santas of all shapes, sizes, and gender. This year we'll need Santa to provide his or her own Santa beard and wig, hat, and Santa jacket to wear while on Zoom.

Santa outfits good enough for Zoom are not too expensive at Party City or Amazon.

There's nothing better than seeing the students' excitement when Santa visits our reading clubs! If you can be a Zoom Santa, Mrs. Claus, or an assisting elf on December 12th, please email us at info@readingtokids.org. You won't be able to read that day, but you'll see dozens of smiling faces!



Do you know any runners? Are you a runner? Please forward this email to them and ask them to join Team Reading to Kids in the 2021 Los Angeles Marathon on Sunday, March 21st!

 Team Reading to Kids logo

We're looking for three more marathon runners to join us in one of the best marathons in the country.

If a marathon is too daunting, you can join us in the LA Big 5K (that's just 3.1 miles) near Dodger Stadium the day before the marathon on Saturday, March 20, 2021.

You can share this Facebook group with any of your runner friends to encourage them to join our team!

If you or a runner you know is interested in becoming one of our fundraising runners or creating a fundraising team, please email Chris Martin at marathon@readingtokids.org!

IMPORTANT NOTE: To register to run on behalf of Reading to Kids, you MUST receive from us a special web address to use when registering on the Los Angeles Marathon website.

Team Reading to Kids 5K runners

Thanks, and once enough teachers are confirmed towards the end of this month, we will open our RSVP system for our next reading clubs (always the second Saturday of each month) on November 14th.


Charlie Orchard & Talethe Jackson
Reading to Kids
1600 Sawtelle Blvd, Suite 210
Los Angeles, CA 90025
(310) 479-7455
(310) 479-7435 (FAX)

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