(WASHINGTON) September 8, 2023 – The Library of Congress Literacy Awards Program announced today—on International Literacy Day—Indianapolis-based Building Tomorrow has been recognized as a 2023 Successful Practices Honoree. Established in 2013, the Library of Congress Literacy Awards Program recognizes organizations in the United States and abroad that provide exemplary, innovative, sustainable, and replicable strategies to promote literacy and reading. As a Successful Practices Honoree, Building Tomorrow is recognized for achievement in the field of literacy promotion, as well as for having a child-centric approach, attention to evaluation, and measured successes.
Founded in 2006, Building Tomorrow delivers community-powered learning to underserved learners in Uganda, where only 6% of fourth graders can read a paragraph. The organization’s signature foundational learning program Roots to Rise was pioneered in 2018, building on the rigorously evaluated Teaching at the Right Level methodology. Since then, more than 220,000 primary school-aged learners have been reached through school and community-based lessons, which are interactive and tailored to the learning level of the student. Of those completing Roots to Rise, over 93% advance at least one level in literacy and/or numeracy and over 82% are able to read a paragraph, compared to just 19% at baseline.
“We hope the excitement around this award can be a platform to continue growing our literacy work and advocating for our model in service to the education sector,” said George Srour, Co-Founder and Chief Dreamer of Building Tomorrow. “By combining a proven pedagogy with a bold community ethos and delivery model, Building Tomorrow is uniquely positioned to transform literacy promotion in last-mile communities. It is affirming that the Library of Congress Literacy Awards Program has recognized our contributions toward this end.” “We are incredibly honored to receive this award, which serves as a powerful testimony to our unique community-led model,” said Robert Sekadde, Deputy Country Director and Director of Programs of Building Tomorrow. “Not only is Roots to Rise promoting literacy, but it is empowering communities to sustain these successes and multiply our efforts.” Building Tomorrow delivers Roots to Rise through community education teams of Building Tomorrow Fellows and Community Education Volunteers (CEVs), the latter of whom are community residents passionate about education.
Building Tomorrow is steadfast in its vision of literacy and numeracy for all children. The organization aims to reach 150,000 children with Roots to Rise lessons in 2023 and at least half a million cumulatively by the end of 2025.
About Building Tomorrow
Founded in 2006, Building Tomorrow works to improve learning for children living in rural, underserved communities throughout Uganda. With the support of 400 dynamic Ugandan university graduates recruited as Building Tomorrow Fellows and a corps of more than 10,000 Community Education Volunteers, Building Tomorrow has enrolled more than 85,000 out-of-school children in school and reached some 220,000 learners through Roots to Rise literacy and numeracy camps, of whom over 93% advance at least one learning level. Building Tomorrow is a non-governmental, not-for-profit organization and is based in Kampala, Uganda and Indianapolis.
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