WXYZ/WMYD-TV (Detroit) celebrated National Reading Day on January 23 by donating 15,000 books to children. The station said more than 9,000 of the books were dispersed to Matrix Human Services Head Start, which is one of the largest providers of free childcare to low-income families in Michigan.
The book effort was made possible by donations from WXYZ and WMYD employees, in addition to a generous donation from the Scripps Howard Foundation, WXYZ will be stocking the shelves of 17 Matrix Head Start Detroit locations. Matrix Head Start provides free, federally-funded early education for pregnant women, children zero to five years old and families and serves over 1,500 children throughout Detroit.
In addition to donating 6,000 books to the center, the station has made another 3,000 books available for Matrix Head Start parents to take home during a summer reading fair, so the children will have access to diverse, age-appropriate books at home, too. Another 6,000 books will be distributed throughout metro Detroit through various book fairs over the year.
WXYZ’s donation of 15,000 books translates to 2.7 million minutes of reading, according to Scholastic Book Fairs group, which estimates that every book generates about 180 minutes of reading for a child.
“Minutes spent reading books at an early age is an important predictor of a child’s success – from their school years through adulthood, as they seek out and interpret information that helps them navigate the world around them,” said Liz Carter, president and CEO of the Scripps Howard Foundation.