Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Macy’s Be Book Smart Campaign Raises $4.9 Million for Reading Is Fundamental, The Nation’s Largest Children’s Literacy Nonprofit

The Be Book Smart smart car outside of Macy's in Manhattan,
which is promoting Reding Is Fundamental campaign

A child shows of her Macy's gift card in front of the
Be Book Smart smart car at the National Zoo in Washington, D.C.
For the third year in a row, more than one million Macy’s customers sprung into action to support Reading Is Fundamental (RIF), the nation’s largest children’s literacy nonprofit. From June 24–July 31, Macy’s customers donated $3 through the Be Book Smart campaign to provide a book for a child, and Macy’s donated 100 percent of every $3 to RIF, for a total donation of $4.9 million. The organizations partnered with the goal of giving one million books to children.

Author Laura Numeroff with the
Be Book Smart smart car at the
Every Picture Tells a Story
book store in Santa Monica, Ca.
“RIF is overwhelmed by the generous support of Macy’s and the millions of customers who shopped during the Be Book Smart campaign,” said Carol H. Rasco, president and CEO of RIF. “As we look to our future, we are pleased to call Macy’s our partner and appreciate their ongoing commitment to RIF and our efforts to improve children’s literacy in the United States.”

Recently, $25 million in federal funding for RIF was eliminated. The amount is about 80 percent of RIF’s total operating budget and the Be Book Smart campaign offered a timely opportunity to help RIF increase private funding while giving back to local communities. Since 2004, RIF’s partnership with Macy’s has raised nearly $21 million to support children’s literacy through customer-supported fundraising campaigns, in-store events, and volunteer activities. Last year, Macy’s supported RIF programs that provided 3.6 million free books to more than 1.2 million children and donated 350 multicultural book collections to RIF programs throughout the country.

“Giving back to local communities is a cornerstone of our business,” said Martine Reardon, executive vice president of marketing for Macy’s. “Reading Is Fundamental has a long history of inspiring children to read and achieve by providing books to own at home. Macy’s passionately supports children’s literacy, and we thank our customers for adding their generous contribution to the RIF organization.”

Reading Is Fundamental, founded in 1966, motivates children to read by working with them, their parents, and community members to make reading a fun and beneficial part of everyday life. RIF’s highest priority is reaching under-served children from birth to age 8. Through community volunteers in every state and U.S. territory, RIF provided four million children with 15 million new, free books and literacy resources last year.

For more information and to access reading resources, visit RIF’s website at www.rif.org.

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Darth Vader with the Be Book Smart smart car in Los Angeles

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