1,100 words before preschool



Press Releases



Contact: Lauren Martin, Word Rebel, info@wordrebel.org 

New York, NY, November 22, 2016 – Word Rebel is joining Global Giving’s 50% matching campaign for #GivingTuesday, a global giving movement that has been driven by individuals, families, organizations, businesses and communities in all 50 states and in countries around the world. Since its founding in 2012, millions of people have come together to support and champion the causes they believe in and the communities in which they live.

Join Word Rebel on #GivingTuesday to ensure all children start preschool with an equal opportunity to succeed. Choose Word Rebel as your tax-deductible year-end gift and every $30 donation will provide 15 book and ongoing literacy instruction to a child in need:


After two days for getting deals – Black Friday and Cyber Monday –#GivingTuesday is a day for giving back. In dozens of towns, cities, regions and states from Alaska to Maine, and Charlotte NC to Dallas TX, people are embracing this day as an opportunity to raise money for local nonprofits, schools and arts organizations; run food and clothing drives; teach children about philanthropy; encourage acts of kindness; collaborate with their neighbors; and celebrate generosity.

In 2015, nonprofits raised more than $117 million online on #GivingTuesday to help make the world a better place in countless ways. Much more was generated offline and through donations of time and other resources. People participated in #GivingTuesday activities in 71 countries around the globe last year, and this year, participating countries include Australia, Brazil, Kenya, Slovenia, Tanzania, the UK and more.

“Since our first full year of programming in 2015, we have donated 5,500 books to children living in the highest poverty neighborhoods in New York City. Last year’s programming was possible because of Global Giving’s #GivingTuesday matching campaign,” said Word Rebel Executive Director, Lauren Martin. “We hope to replicate donor enthusiasm in 2016 to ensure the strength of our 2017 programs. We donate books through day care partners who exclusively serve children living in poverty. Many of our partners are located in the NYCHA housing projects. One of our partners, Sheltering Arms, serves 45 children in the Jacob Riis Housing Projects in the Lower East Side of Manhattan. In Bed-Stuy, Brooklyn, we are partnered with both of the BKSNY childcare centers serving the 125 children under 4 who live in the Sumner Housing Projects. In Harlem’s Drew Hamilton Housing projects, our Children’s Aid Society partner serves 80 children. One of our South Bronx partners, H.E.L.P. provides free temporary housing and childcare to lessen the trauma of homelessness for 30 children under 5 years old. These are just 5 of our 30+ dedicated partners who help distribute books and early childhood literacy instruction. In addition to book donations, we provide ongoing literacy support through our weekly Prep4Prek text. Our partner, at the NYCHA’s Wald childcare center, shared that learning how to teach their children vocabulary and reading skills while walking down the street or sitting on the subway has had a huge impact on parents with little to no free time. Parents are empowered to commit to one small action a day to make a big difference in their child’s future.”

Those who are interested in joining Word Rebel’s #GivingTuesday initiative can donate as little as $3 to provide 1 book and 1 year of weekly literacy instruction to an underserved child in one of fifty high poverty communities in Brooklyn, Manhattan or the Bronx. Donate on #GivingTuesday and The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation will match 50% of your donation as part of the #MatchAMillion campaign on Global Giving. Your 50% matched gift means every $30 donation provides 15 books to children in need:


For more details about the #GivingTuesday movement, visit the #GivingTuesday website (www.givingtuesday.org), Facebook page (https://www.facebook.com/GivingTuesday) or follow @GivingTues and the #GivingTuesday hashtag on social media.

About Word Rebel

Word Rebel is a volunteer-run 501(c)(3) charity. 100% of every tax-deductible donation is used to purchase books for children living in poverty in New York City. Word Rebel programs address one simple reality: The most accurate predictor of whether or not a child will graduate from high school is the number of words they know when they start preschool. This is true regardless of parent income, parent education, environmental factors or access to quality schools. Word Rebel provides high quality books and early childhood literacy instruction to empower parents – with limited time and resources – to close the preschool vocabulary gap and subsequent achievement gap. Visit www.wordrebel.org to learn more about how 100% of your donation makes a difference.

About #GivingTuesday

#GivingTuesday is a movement, built by people around the world, to celebrate giving of all kinds. It is celebrated on the Tuesday after Thanksgiving (in the U.S.), Black Friday and Cyber Monday; this year it falls on November 29, 2016. This movement is the result of the collective power of a unique blend of partners—nonprofits large and small; businesses and corporations; schools and universities; civic campaigns in cities, states and regions; and families and individuals—to inspire people to take collaborative action to improve their local communities and contribute in countless ways to the causes they believe in. Everyone has something to give.

To learn more about #GivingTuesday participants and activities or to join the celebration of giving, please visit:

Website: www.givingtuesday.org






Lauren Martin, Word Rebel, info@wordrebel.org

Mike Barrett, Scholastic, mbarrett@scholastic.com

New York, NY, November 18, 2016 – Word Rebel received a grant from bestselling author James Patterson to build 20 libraries in day cares serving 1,000 children in low-income housing projects. In addition, Scholastic Reading Club matched each dollar of Patterson’s donation with “bonus points” for Word Rebel to choose even more books and classroom materials. Word Rebel was selected amongst thousands of grant applicants. To learn more, listen to Patterson’s exclusive interview about the critical need for school libraries on the “Scholastic Reads” podcast: oomscholasticblog.com/podcast/james-patterson-loves-libraries

James Patterson, in partnership with Scholastic Reading Club, pledged $1.75 million to save school libraries nationwide in the second installment of his School Library Campaign. As part of an ongoing effort to keep books and reading a number one priority in the United States, selected school libraries will be receiving grants ranging from $1,000 to $10,000. Since the grant program’s launch in 2015, Patterson has donated $3.5 million to school libraries nationwide, with all funds personally donated by Patterson.

“Word Rebel is honored to receive the Patterson Partnership Grant,” said Word Rebel Executive Director, Lauren Martin. “Since our goal is to fight the cycle of poverty at its source, our programs address one simple reality: The most accurate predictor of whether or not a child will graduate from high school is the number of words they know when they start preschool. This is true regardless of parent income, parent education, environmental factors or access to quality schools. We empower parents, with limited time and resources, to close the preschool vocabulary gap and subsequent achievement gap. Thanks to the generosity of James Patterson, we will deliver 1,000 high-quality books to 20 day cares serving high poverty communities. To maximize our impact, parents at all 20 day cares will receive our weekly email-text service. Every week, parents will receive eBooks and questioning strategies to easily teach vocabulary and reading skills on city sidewalks or public transportation. Our programs remove the barriers that prevent low-income families from prioritizing early childhood literacy. We are proud to support James Patterson’s commitment to help more children access high-quality books and an equal opportunity to succeed.”

In the first-ever partnership of its kind, Patterson joined Scholastic Reading Club to offer 800,000 educators an opportunity to apply. Grant applicants across the country were asked to share their story, including “great ideas to help create a brighter future.” James Patterson personally read and selected the winning recipients of the grants. Selected recipients are now using funds to purchase books, add bookshelves, and expand their programming. The full list of grant recipients is available online at http://www.scholastic.com/pattersonpartnership/recipients.

To learn more, go to mediaroom.scholastic.com/scholasticreadingclub and follow #PattersonPledge on social media.