Next year, the Pearson Foundation will award $2,500 to two joint Rotary Club-International Reading Association literary projects, undertaken between January 1, 2013 and June 15, 2014. The International Reading Association (I.R.A.) stated, “The RI-IRA Literacy Award will honor two outstanding literacy initiatives created jointly by Rotary clubs and International Reading Association councils or affiliated councils. Two winning projects, chosen by a team of judges selected by Rotary and the IRA, will receive $2,500 from the Pearson Foundation in recognition of their literacy efforts.”
Founded in 1956, the International Reading Association has about 60,000 members. International Literacy Day is September 8th. The IRA celebrated International Reading Day this year with an event on September 9th in Washington, D.C. “Career Ready Reading: What Employers Need from Schools and How We Can Work Together.”
The IRA estimates that 774,000,000 adults around the world are illiterate, of whom two-thirds are women. Another 123,000,000 children are illiterate.
Chicago lawyer Paul P. Harris founded Rotary in 1905. There are approximately 1,200,000 Rotarians with Rotary Club around the world.
The World Headquarters of Rotary International (“Service Above Self”) is in north suburban Evanston, Illinois. It supports Rotary Clubs by coordinating global programs and campaigns. The Rotary Foundation accepts donations and disperses funds to support efforts by Rotary Clubs and partner organizations.
The Pearson Foundation is the non-profit arm of the media conglomerate Pearson plc, which employs approximately 37,000 people around the world. The Pearson Foundation will cover the cost of lodging in Washington, D.C. — one room for one night — for each of the two winning projects, but transportation costs will be the winners’ responsibility.
To qualify for the literacy project award, projects must “Improve literacy in a specific community.” It must involve significant collaboration between Rotarians and IRA members between January 1, 2013 and June 15, 2014 (though the project need not be complete when the application is submitted).
There has to be “an IRA contact who is a member in good standing of an IRA-affiliated council” and “a Rotary contact who is a member in good standing of a Rotary club.” The RI-IRA-Pearson Foundation Literacy Award Submission Form application can be accessed here. As noted here, the prize is not a project grant.
The deadline for submitting an application is June 15, 2014. Winners will be notified July 1, 2014. The awards will be presented in Washington, D.C. on International Literacy Day (September 8, 2014).