Anyone and everyone can change the world, even in the slightest way. An organization known as Read to Feed gives children the opportunity to make a difference in the lives of families living in poverty.
The program encourages childhood reading while raising awareness of extreme global poverty in young minds. Read to Feed teaches and informs students of the realities of malnutrition and poverty, inspiring them to help those in need and providing an educational incentive to do so.
Here’s how it works: A child chooses a sponsor for each book he or she reads during a period of time set by his or her Read to Feed leader. The sponsor agrees to provide a certain amount of money for each book read or hour spent reading. Then, after the books have been read and the funds collected, the child chooses an animal through Heifer International to give to a family experiencing poverty.
Heifer International is an organization dedicated to ending global poverty and world hunger. Heifer provides families in impoverished communities with livestock and training to combat malnutrition as well as build a sustainable lifestyle.
Furthermore, Heifer encourages the families they have helped to share the training they receive with other families in their communities and pass on the first female offspring of their livestock to another family in need, thus creating a cycle of sustainability that has the power to lift entire communities out of poverty.
The wide variety of livestock provides families with meat, milk, wool and manure to grow their own agriculture. Kids can participate in Read to Feed individually or in groups; however, the program most often takes place in a classroom setting.
Furthermore, Heifer provides Global Education Lesson Plans so that teachers can inform students of the realities of global poverty and the impact that they can make in changing its course.
Read to Feed ultimately provides children with a way to make a difference in many lives. Reading a book is a fun incentive to end extreme poverty, both stimulating a child’s mind by increasing the number of books they read, and their knowledge of the world. Anyone can make a difference and everyone– no matter what age– deserves the chance to try.
– Sarah Sheppard