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News from Reach Out and Read Washington State
In This Issue
Summer Reading Partnerships Thrive
Join Reach Out and Read at Starting Strong
"Little Libraries" Come to South Park
Community Members Support Reach Out and Read
Music Video Features Reach Out and Read Pediatrician
Reach Out and Read Washington State on Facebook
About Reach Out and Read Washington State
Support Reach Out and Read in Washington
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Reach Out and Read programs!  
July 2013

"If you have a garden and a library, you have everything you need."

                -Marcus Tullius Cicero


What a lovely concept, a book and the beautiful outdoors. As summer hits full swing with this glorious weather, it's a perfect time to encourage everyone to pick up a great book. Summer reading is a special joy. It is also a critical endeavor to help kids of all ages continue to learn, and avoid the "summer slide."


With the advent of summer also came the long-awaited end to the legislative season. We are thankful for the increased investments in early learning, and particularly for the restoration of state funding for Reach Out and Read. While the amount of funding was far less than we had hoped, it was an important step in the right direction.


There are myriad ways to help Reach Out and Read support young children and families, and we hope the stories below inspire you. Read on to learn about our library partnerships, Starting Strong, innovative "Little Libraries" in South Park, and how PCC employees supported one of our clinics.


For a little summer music fun, check out a hip-hop video from our friends in Rhode Island featuring pediatrician Dr. Rick Quiles in "I Love it When I Read With My Papi!"  We hope you will soon have a chance to put on sunscreen, grab sunglasses, and curl up with a great book outside this summer. Enjoy!


Thank you for your support.  


Jill Sells, MD and the Reach Out and Read Washington Team




Dr. Jeff Wright and Laurel Smith at the Pediatric Care Center at UWMC Roosevelt Clinic, pictured with summer reading logs from Seattle Public Libraries.

Reach Out and Read teams up with King County Library System and Seattle Public Libraries to put summer reading program materials into the hands of families. Learning loss in the summer among school children is a well-documented phenomenon. Public libraries across the country combat this "summer slide" with programs to increase reading during the summer. What many families don't know is that summer reading programs are for children of all ages, inspiring parents of the youngest children to read to them all summer long.


Reach Out and Read has long been a fan of summer reading programs. This year we launched an expanded library partnership in Seattle and King County as part of our work with the Road Map Project. We provided 42 clinics with summer reading materials from their local library. Doctors will share this with the families as they come in for checkups and other visits this summer. Encouraging families to visit the library is a natural extension of the important work that Reach Out and Read doctors do to foster a love of reading and increase literacy skills for young children. When doctors hand families the summer reading log, children can get started on the program right way. And even more importantly, we are encouraging life-long library use, starting with babies.




A secret formula: How every community can improve kindergarten readiness and 3rd grade reading outcomes through Reach Out and Read. Drs. Sells and Woodruff will present this workshop on Tuesday, August 6th at the annual Starting Strong Conference.The 5th annual Starting Strong P-3 Institute will be in Lynnwood this year, hosted by Northwest Educational Service District 189.  There is a great lineup of keynote speakers including Dr. Dimitri Christakis, a pediatrician at the University of Washington and Seattle Children's, and Dr. Nonie Lesaux, a Professor of Education at the Harvard Graduate School of Education. Last year's event in Vancouver was a big success, and the Reach Out and Read breakout session was packed. We hope to see you there! Register here.


Shoaib Fakhri - ROR Program Coordinator, Community HealthCorps / AmeriCorps; Sean Chambers - Home Depot; Tommy Crocker - Community HealthCorps / AmeriCorps

HealthCorps/AmeriCorps team makes a lasting difference for literacy. Shoaib Fakhri, our Reach Out and Read coordinator for the Sea Mar Community Health Centers system, joined with his Community HealthCorps/AmeriCorps team to collaborate on a final action project to mark the end of their year of service. Their mission was to develop a project designed to address community issues in a lasting and meaningful way - and they decided to install "Little Libraries" in underserved South Park neighborhoods.


Little Libraries have started popping up in neighborhoods all around the US since being introduced in Wisconsin in 2009. Based on a simple "Take a Book, Leave a Book" philosophy, Little Libraries are small decorative boxes (think: large birdhouse) filled with a supply of donated books that can be borrowed, read, returned or replaced. Operating on the honor system, Little Libraries help build community trust and connections, while promoting literacy and a love of reading.


The Sea Mar/Community HealthCorps Little Library project got started with a quick trip to the local Home Depot store. Shoaib and his team pitched the idea to the folks at the "Pro Desk," who loved the idea of giving back to their community.  Home Depot agreed to not only generously fund the whole project but provided the expertise and volunteers to build the libraries as well!


Sean Chambers from Home Depot helps Jose access the Little Library.
From there everything fell into place. Shoaib and his colleagues partnered with the Providence Regina Food Bank and two local Sea Mar clinics to have an outdoor library installed at each location. A dedication event took place on May 30th at the food bank. Community members joined staff from the Sea Mar and Providence Regina for snacks, entertainment and the official Little Library unveiling. Local author Katherine Pryor read from her recently published children's book Sylvia's Spinach.


Community HealthCorps members were thrilled to coordinate this project and hope that South Park community members enjoy their Little Libraries for years to come!

(Thanks to Shoaib Fakhri for contributing content for this article.)




From left to right, Jennifer Beus (PCC Greenlake), Jean Yue, RN (North Public), and Gwen Pastel (PCC Greenlake).


Greenlake PCC Natural Market donates books for North Public Health Clinic. When workers at the PCC collected books for children, they turned to Reach Out and Read to help get them into the hands of young children. According to Jamie Burns, Community Relationship Specialist at PCC, "In partnership with Discover Books, PCC collected over 55,000 pounds of books last year and is so happy to be able to share some of the children's books with the Reach Out and Read program to help encourage literacy in our youth."


Reach Out and Read was happy to connect them with our program at the Public Health Clinic near Northgate. Dr. Cathy Pew expressed her appreciation, and explained how much the program means to the children, and the doctors who care for them. "Our patients love getting books.  For some of them, the Reach Out and Read books are the only new books they own.  One child, coming in for his three-year old checkup, had had trouble sleeping the night before because he was so excited about getting a book.  It is a wonderful feeling to come into a room and see that face light up and those hands reach out to accept that beautiful, new book.  And, now, our pediatric residents are getting the excitement too, as they look through our collection and think about their favorites as children and participate in ordering new ones."


Reach Out and Read programs are continually in need of new books to distribute to young children between 6 months and 5 years of age during their well-child checkups. In the coming year we expect to need 180,000 new books! Some Reach Out and Read programs also use gently used books in waiting rooms, and to give to children at sick visits. If you are interested in making a donation to support the program, you can do so online at If you want to donate actual books, please contact us at or 206.524.3579 so we can explain the process.





I Love It When I Read With My Papi. Dr. Rick Quiles, of Park Pediatrics in Cranston, Rhode Island, addresses literacy and health disparities in a hip-hop song featuring community leaders involved in early learning. Watch the video to learn more about the importance of parents, books, and reading aloud with children in this fun piece from Reach Out and Read Rhode Island.




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Reach Out and Read helps prepare children to succeed in school by partnering with doctors to prescribe books and encourage families to read together. Our evidence-based proven program leverages the influence of children's doctors and makes literacy a standard part of well-child checkups from ages 6 months through 5 years. Reach Out and Read supports parents as their child's first teacher and helps children be ready for kindergarten. 


Through 158 programs in 31 counties, 1,200 medical providers serve an estimated 90,000 children and their families across Washington. Reach Out and Read Washington State is a Regional Office of Reach Out and Read, Inc., a national not-for-profit 501(c)3 organization.



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Telephone - 206-524-3579
Fax - 206-524-4768  

Address - 155 NE 100th Street - Suite 301, Seattle WA 98125