January 8, 2015


IMLS Press Contact
Giuliana Bullard gbullard@imls.gov

Reach Out and Read Contact
Katie Ahearn, katie.ahearn@reachoutandread.org

Grant Will Connect Early Learning Services of Museums and Libraries with Medical Community

Reach Out and Read’s New Project is a Prescription for Success

Washington, DC—With funding from the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS), Reach Out and Read will develop and launch Prescription for Success, a year-long project beginning in 2015 aimed at helping more families benefit from museum and library services that foster literacy development in young children. As a national nonprofit organization comprised of doctors and nurses who encourage family reading habits, Reach Out and Read has deep and broad relationships within the medical community. Prescription for Success will leverage these connections to explore new ways doctors and their staff can collaborate with museums and libraries.

During the first six months of the project, Reach Out and Read will survey and document current state and local partnerships between Reach Out and Read and libraries and museums, and create an online toolkit of best literacy practices. This toolkit will serve as a valuable resource for medical clinics, libraries, and museums. During the second half of the project, Reach Out and Read will facilitate and further develop statewide library and museum collaborations in Colorado, Connecticut, and South Carolina.

“We are grateful for this new support from the Institute of Museum and Library Services, and look forward to collaborating on our Prescription for Success project,” said Reach Out and Read Executive Director Brian Gallagher. “We are confident that the partnership between Reach Out and Read doctors and staff, and museum and library leadership, will lead to a cohesive delivery of early education services for families. By reading together more often, and leveraging community resources, parents will help children build the early language skills needed for academic success.”

“All too often, children who enter kindergarten behind their peers never catch up, and they are at a much greater risk of failing in school. In order to bring about change, all sectors of communities need to focus on this problem,” said Maura Marx, IMLS Deputy Director for Library Services. “Prescription for Success brings together two sectors that can have a profound impact on the lives of young children, and we are excited to be supporting this important work.”

About Reach Out and Read
Reach Out and Read is the evidence-based, national nonprofit organization that promotes early brain development, literacy, and school readiness by giving new books to children and advice to parents about the importance of reading aloud at regular pediatric checkups. Nationwide, Reach Out and Read's 20,000 doctors and nurses serve 4 million children annually at 5,000 hospitals, health centers, and clinics in all 50 states, with a focus on serving families in low-income communities. For more information, please visit www.reachoutandread.org.

About the Institute of Museum and Library Services
The Institute of Museum and Library Services is the primary source of federal support for the nation’s 123,000 libraries and 35,000 museums. Our mission is to inspire libraries and museums to advance innovation, lifelong learning, and cultural and civic engagement. Our grant making, policy development, and research help libraries and museums deliver valuable services that make it possible for communities and individuals to thrive. To learn more, visit www.imls.gov and follow us on Facebook and Twitter.

Laura Bush 21st Century Librarian Program