Literacy in the Context of Survival

For too many people literacy vs. illiteracy has become a question of life vs. death. Understanding the correlation between illiteracy, disease and poverty is not intended to contribute to fear and helplessness felt by many when observing the severity of HIV/AIDS crisis. Rather these studies are a cue for what we can all do today to combat this pandemic. UNESCO reports that:

“Given the impact of the epidemic worldwide, with nearly 40 million people living with HIV/AIDS, the role of literacy and non-formal education needs to be fully acknowledged and promoted as part of the overall response to the HIV/AIDS pandemic.”

The most at risk population for contracting HIV/AIDS are the rural poor, particularly woman and girls who comprise 70% of the world’s impoverished population.  Our international literacy partners Books for Africa , Room to Read and World Fund serve the most vulnerable communities by helping them obtain the life long tool of literacy which assists in the reduction of poverty and access to education and appropriate information with regard to health related issues.

Although, our book drives encourage the small and simple act of donating a used textbook, the collective impact and results of these acts of kindness are anything but small. What’s so exciting about Better World Books is that by addressing illiteracy, one of the factors contributing to disease and poverty, we are able to provide a tangible way to address the gargantuan statistics and despondency surrounding the HIV/AIDS pandemic.

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