Reading Is Fundamental Hits Town

Literacy nonprofit brings Curious George to LBJ

Chris Barton's The Day-Glo Brothers is part of the family literacy day on April 11.
Chris Barton's The Day-Glo Brothers is part of the family literacy day on April 11.

If you've made it this far down the page, we're assuming one really basic truth. Not that you care about the Chronicle (though we hope you do), or that you even know what this headline means – hell, you might just be sick of looking at thumbnail images.

But no, seriously, if you're still following along, we're assuming you can read.

It's not something to be taken for granted, this skill of transforming complicated sequences of strange shapes into meaningful thoughts with no more physical exertion than a quick flick of the eyes from left to right. But it's something that 16% of the world population over age 15 struggled with as of 2005. And it's something that the Reading Is Fundamental nonprofit hopes to boost with its local events this week.

RIF delivers literacy resources and free books to kids in hopes that owning a book inspires a lifelong love of reading; in its 47-year history, the group has given some 400 million books to underserved children in the United States, including 224,000 to Austin kids in 2011 and 2012 combined.

Check out these events*, or go online to to learn what you can do to help RIF's efforts.

Thursday, April 11
A family literacy celebration introduces kids and parents to Curious George and a few children's book authors with titles in RIF's Multicultural Book Collection. Kids will participate in craft time and take home free books. 4-6pm, LBJ Presidential Library.

Friday, April 12
RIF joins forces with Austin-based family literacy nonprofit Book Spring to distribute free books to students at Campbell Elementary (11am, 2613 Rogers).

UPDATE: Unfortunately, these events are officially at capacity. Learn more about RIF and its efforts at its website:

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Reading Is Fundamental, literacy, reading, free, books, Curious George, Chris Barton, Tim Tingle, Cynthia Leitich Smith

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