We Give Books

wgb-logo-smlTogether with the Penguin Group, the Pearson Foundation has launched We Give Books, a digital initiative that enables anyone with access to the Internet to put books in the hands of children who don’t have them, simply by reading online.

We Give Books is a free website that provides parents, caregivers, and educators with immediate access to a growing digital collection of Penguin Group’s classic children’s literature – stories that they can enjoy in the classroom or at home to enhance early reading experiences. For every Penguin or DK book read online at wegivebooks.org, the Pearson Foundation donates a book to a child in partnership with one of the exemplary international, national, and local literacy organizations that the We Give Books program helps to support.

A crucial, and innovative, component of this program is that it creates shared experiences among parents and their young children that have the potential to impact a life of giving – a correlation supported by a research poll of parents and teenagers commissioned by the Penguin Group and the Pearson Foundation.

Though the poll revealed a strong correlation between reading together and charitable action, it also indicated that parents were unaware how to use reading with their children to spur charitable behavior. To make the connection stronger, the We Give Books site offers parents opportunities to:

  • Explain how a child can help people by his or her actions;
  • Speak about the volunteering and charity they do;
  • Talk to the child about how his or her actions make other people feel;
  • Discuss goals, encourage opinions, and tell children that they are proud of them; and
  • Explain the importance of giving to others.

The initial literacy campaigns that will benefit from the We Give Books program are centered in locations recently touched by disaster and in the greatest need of aid. They include:

  • The Asia Foundation’s Books for Asia program
  • The Los Angeles County Office of Education’s Million Word Challenge
  • The NEA Foundation’s Books Across America program
  • Room to Read
  • The United Through Reading Military Program
  • Volunteer USA’s Family Literacy Academies
  • World Vision’s Early Childhood Development Learning Spaces program