Local child literacy program receives $38K gift

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — A Michigan nonprofit has new life after receiving more than $38,000 from philanthropist MacKenzie Scott.

Reach Out and Read Michigan joined nine other state affiliates of the nationwide program in splitting up an $8 million grant Scott donated last year. The Michigan branch will take in $38,500 to be used among its 164 clinics in the state.

“I’m just thrilled because you can hear you’re getting those funds, and you can immediately think about kids and families and the impact that it will make for them,” Angie DeLost, the affiliate leader for Reach Out and Read Michigan, said.

The nonprofit, which is focused on early literacy and relational health for children, plans to use the funds to continue building the infrastructure here in Michigan and allowing the current clinics to continue helping families across the state.

“We have a vision that every child in Michigan, in the future, will have access to this program and that parents will be able to understand the power they have in reading to their children,” DeLost said.

Some clinics were in fear of shutting down before the grant money was donated. DeLost said they have been identified and will take priority to ensure they remain open. The remaining funds will go towards books and other resources for families to utilize.

DeLost also told News 8 that she hopes the additional funding will allow Reach Out and Read to not only provide care to families but also generate buzz around the program and be able to expand its outreach.

If you would like to find more information or sign up for a Reach Out and Read program, click here or send an email to info@readyforschool.org.

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