Read It Forward for World Read Aloud Day

World Read Aloud Day is two weeks away! This year LitWorld’s annual advocacy day is on March 6, and we are honored to write a Nerdy guest post to share the WRAD movement with a community of engaged literacy activists and educators.

So, what’s World Read Aloud Day all about? Well, UNESCO estimates that around the world 793 million people cannot read or write. 793 million. This number never gets easier to conceive or digest. Roughly translated, that means 1 out of every 5 people on Earth cannot read or write.

We started World Read Aloud Day four years ago to make literacy an urgent global issue. More than that, our goal is to achieve recognition of literacy as the fundamental building block for all other human rights. Reading and writing trickle over into every aspect of our lives. When you have the ability to read and write, you can advocate for yourself, you can read medicine bottles, street signs, contracts, instruction manuals, literature, research… your rights. Literacy is directly correlated to better health and economic outcomes, and once you can read, no one can take that away from you.

World Read Aloud Day creates a community of people who are advocating for every child’s right to learn to read and technology that will make them lifelong readers. Everyone can change the world and Read It Forward by reading aloud with loved ones or new friends. We use the term “Read It Forward” to drive home the message that by reading aloud to someone on March 6, you are committing a reading act of kindness. You are already creating a positive change by giving away the power of story. This in turn may inspire more reading acts of kindness, starting a far-reaching ripple effect.

What we really like to emphasize is that World Read Aloud Day is for everyone, everywhere. All ages, all professions, all countries. In fact we’ve already been sent a picture of a cat looking deeply engrossed in a book about giraffes (can’t blame him, giraffes are fascinating)! Head over to litworld.org for free downloadable activity kits full of ideas for children, teens, families, educators, and professionals.

For even more suggestions, find us on Twitter and Facebook where we are sharing and tweeting about the incredible ways our community of WRADvocates plan to celebrate in their own communities.

Many thanks again to the Nerdy Book Club for believing in the power of story and spreading literacy every single day. We can’t wait to celebrate with you all on March 6. Be sure to email photos and stories to wrad@litworld.org so that we can track the Read It Forward movement and recognize you for your participation.