Our Annual Fund update: Why we ask

As we near the end of the year, Read Aloud West Virginia is grateful to the many donors, friends and volunteers who support our efforts that motivate children to want to read. We cannot do it without you.

Our Annual Fund drive continues. We are trying to reach goals for next year’s work. If you have not given and are considering, please know:

1. Read Aloud has Neighborhood Investment Program tax credits available. Those credits can be used any time over the next five years, starting with the donation year. They lower a West Virginia personal income tax bill or a corporate net income tax bill by as much as half the gift amount starting with donations of at least $500. Donors may receive no more than $100,000 a year in NIP credits, and credits cannot be used to reduced a tax bill by more than half. That means a $10,000 donation would cut a tax bill by $5,000. A $500 donation would reduce a tax bill by $250.

2. What we are doing is working. First, Read Aloud focuses on motivating children to want to read, not fussing at them to read.

Continue reading “Our Annual Fund update: Why we ask”

Marion County board member recognized for efforts to promote literacy

What does Amy Merrill, a third grade teacher in Fairmont and a Marion County Read Aloud board member, have in common with 29 other Amy Merrillindividuals from places like Nigeria, Haiti, Spain, New York, Canada, Nepal, California, and India? The answer is that she, like them, was recognized in September in the International Literacy Association’s “30 Under 30” list as an innovative young leader helping to transform literacy world-wide.

The International Literacy Association (ILA) is a global advocacy and membership organization dedicated to advancing literacy for all.  Its inaugural “30 Under 30” list represents 13 countries, according to the ILA’s press release, with each honoree creating and implementing an initiative that “directly improved the quality of literacy instruction or … increased access to literacy tools.”

In addition to her classroom work, Merrill coaches a Lego robotics team, and helps coordinate projects like keeping “Little Free Libraries” stocked with books, providing large print books to nursing homes, and giving gift bags to children admitted to hospital cancer units.  While she only recently joined the board of Marion County Read Aloud, she is in her third term on the Marion County Reading Council, and is a member of the West Virginia Reading Association Executive Board.

Merrill is humbled by her nomination, but passionate about literacy, which comes through clearly in everything she does.  Aletta Moffett, Marion County Read Aloud chapter president, noted that, while she has not yet had the opportunity to work much with Merrill, she is “very impressed with her.  I see [her recognition] as a sign of good things to come.”

Congratulations, Amy! To read the article in the September/October issue of Literacy Today featuring all 30 honorees, visit www.literacyworldwide.org/30under30.