For the past 7 years, I have donated my birthday to Room to Read, an NGO I trust 100% and am so passionate about. Their mission & goal is for every child in the world to have access to education and literacy no matter where they were born. Today, there are approximately 800,000 people who are illiterate (2/3 are females). That is 1/9 people in the world. The “luck of lottery” that the founder John Wood refers to is that where you were born should not determine whether or not you have the opportunity to learn how to read and write.
Whether I have a birthday party or not, I ask my friends online to donate through my Fundraising page. If I do have a birthday party, I always negotiate with the bar/restaurants I am throwing the party at to donate 10-20% of the proceeds. People love to eat and drink to a good cause!
Many people in the United States don’t recognize their privilege.
- Either they don’t recognize that they are privileged as they are stuck in their bubble.
- Or feel that admitting to being privileged sounds snobby.
I recognize and am grateful for this privilege every day, for all that I possess.
If you live in the United States, you live in the top 5% of the world. Those reading who make more than $40,000 belong to the top 1% of the world. It’s hard to believe when there’s so much more that our mind thinks we have YET to possess. Living standards vary tremendously from country to country. Having basic shelter, food, water and healthcare access puts you in this top percentage.
I am Lucky to have Wonderful, Generous Friends
Between my boyfriend Sri & my birthday campaign this year, we raised about $3300 from our friends. I am enthralled by the good friends who continue to give annually and tirelessly support Room to Read events in Los Angeles throughout the year. I am just as delighted for the friends I haven’t seen or talked to in years who surprised me by generously donating online. It has been a gratifying way to reconnect to say the least! 👧🏽
Who said Social Media is a negative thing?
You always have to look at the positive effects of everything!
Because of your collective donations and our personal matches, we have reached our year end goal of building another library. Project will be built inside a primary school (elementary school) in Telangana (Hyderabad), South India. Expected completion: 2018.
With a population of close to 40 million people in this region, 66% are reported to be illiterate.
This will be our 3rd Library built, 3rd year in a row in honor of Sri’s Grandparents who valued education tremendously. They worked hard in educating their children, both girls and boys.
“This library is dedicated to Koneru Kamalamba, our loving mother and grandmother who taught us that many things may come and go, but education will be with you forever.”
Building a Room to Read Library in India
- Rebuilding an old building whether it is an old classroom or office
- Remodeling it into a safe, environmentally friendly place for children
- Painting, Decorating the Room
- Furniture: chairs, bookshelves, tables
- Salary for Librarian
- Hundreds of colorful Published Books in their Local Language (Telugu, Hindi & Urdu in Telangana)
Cost also includes the ongoing support of the library for 3 years before Room to Read makes a soft exit. The goal from the beginning, along with careful preparation, is for the Library & School to be self-sufficient in the long run. Room to Read then does check-ins & follow ups in months/years to come. Studies have shown that there has been a high success rate in maintenance.
Below is an example of a personalized report they send us after our first completed Library built:
Learn more about Room to Read’s Literacy Program: https://www.roomtoread.org/literacy-girls-education/literacy.
On behalf of the children in the World, Thank you for all your Support!
Support Girl’s Education & Literacy through Room to Read: https://give.roomtoread.org/fundraiser/973891.