As stated in Houston's Literacy Crisis: A Blueprint for Community Action, "Research has shown there is only one book available for every 300 children in low-income areas, as opposed to 13 books, on average, in homes of middle-and-high income children." Books are a luxury that many families cannot afford, yet they are essential to a child's development.
Without access to age-appropriate reading materials, children are already behind when they start the school year. In order to break the cycle of low literacy within families and reduce the performance gap, which constrains the education system and fuels the achievement gap in later years, we must work together to provide Houston's children with adequate literacy resources.
Giving books to help families build their home libraries is one way that you can play a role in attacking Houston's literacy crisis. Here is a list of programs in the Houston area that collect and/or donate new and/or used books.
PROGRAMS THAT COLLECT BOOKS
Books Between Kids
Gently used children's books appropriate for Pre-K through 5th grade readers.
Friends of the Houston Public Library
New and used books, CDs, and other materials.
Texas Children's Health Plan
New and age-appropriate books for a general pediatric population. References to illnesses should only be positive.
New and gently used books appropriate for preschool through 5th grade children.
Small Steps Nurturing Center
New or gently used English and Spanish books for preschool children.
Star of Hope
New or gently used Bibles and educational books.
Memorial Assistance Ministries
New or gently used books of for ages. No encyclopedias accepted.
Houston Center for Literacy
New or gently used books for all ages.