Room to Read Bangladesh Seated at Influential Table
Recognizing that having a school curriculum two decades old may not be an effective way to adequately prepare children for a change-filled world, the government of Bangladesh recently decided to take on the monumental task of reviewing and revising their primary school curriculum and textbooks used throughout the country.
The three-year process reflects a major policy shift from the past, as government officials decided to include NGOs in the revision process — and Room to Read was invited to the table. Despite Room to Read’s relatively short tenure as an NGO in Bangladesh, education officials were very familiar with the quality of our work, having been previously involved in Room to Read’s book selection and teacher trainings.
Zaki Hasan, Room to Read Bangladesh Country Director explains, “Including Room to Read in this process is a huge compliment and speaks to the level of respect our organization has gained in just a short time. They have seen our zeal about education, and I think the organization’s dynamic attitude and interest to contribute in the mainstream system have also attracted those government officials to put the name of Room to Read on the committee.”
Zaki sits on the review advisory committee, and Zakaria Rahman, the Reading Room Program Manager in Bangladesh, shares his expertise as part of the working committee. The committees compare curriculum and materials from several other countries and make recommendations for the Bangladesh updates. The focus of the new curriculum is on basic literacy skills, which is in complete alignment with Room to Read’s strategic vision.
Zaki notes, “I’m confident we can demonstrate ways to improve reading skills through our own literacy program. The government will then recognize Room to Read’s ability to be one of the most thoughtful, adaptable and extremely resulted-oriented NGO’s working in Bangladesh.”
Learn more about our programs in Bangladesh »
Room to Read Ranks in Top 10 of Barron’s Top 25 Givers
Room to Read is making headlines in Barron’s Magazine for the second consecutive year in their Barron’s “Top 25 Givers” issue that measures and ranks socially conscious individuals that are making the greatest impact on some of the world's most urgent issues. Barron’s gave “especially high points to giving that has strong ripple effects or is magnified through alliances with others.” The list, compiled in collaboration with Global Philanthropy Group, ranked Room to Read #9, in between high profile individuals such as Bill Gates at #1 and Oprah Winfrey at #21.
Room to Read CEO, Erin Ganju, noted, “Room to Read’s growing impact in international education has been centered around a model of building alliances and partnerships — both at a local level with other NGO’s, governments, community leaders, parents and teachers, as well as with corporate giants who invest in our program growth.”
John Wood, Room to Read Founder and Board Chair was obviously proud to hear the news, “Most of the list is comprised of foundations, not boot-strapped NGOs like Room to Read. We're therefore especially proud that several of the other top 25 philanthropists — including Bill Gates, Jeff Skoll, Bill Clinton, Marc Benioff and Oprah Winfrey — are funding partners of Room to Read. Making the Barron’s list two years in a row is a testament to the outstanding work of our entire team. Our global network of an incredible staff, stellar board and committed fundraising volunteer chapters have put us on the map, and we’re clearly here to stay.”
In addition to the Barron’s list, Room to Read has been making headlines in other major media outlets. John is scheduled to appear on The Charlie Rose Show in the upcoming weeks (please check their website for upcoming schedule). In addition, over the last several months, John and Erin have written thoughtful and provoking editorials for influential news sites including Forbes.com, Bloomberg BusinessWeek, the Huffington Post and CNBC.com
Read the Barron’s 25 Best Givers issue here »
Click here for a full list of our recent media coverage »
Toast the Holidays with @Fledgling and Twitter's eBay Auction
Twitter’s Fledgling wines benefiting Room to Read have officially flown the nest and are available to grace your holiday table or to be given as the perfect seasonal gift. And, today on eBay, Twitter is launching a special Fledgling auction to benefit Room to Read! The unique items include limited edition magnums of Fledgling Pinot Noir (only 140 were bottled) and one-of-a-kind gift experiences including interning at Twitter for the day. Or, you can bid on lunch for two with the one and only Twitter founder, Biz Stone, and the one and only Methuselah, an 8-bottle equivalent massive bottle of Fledgling wine. The auction runs on eBay from December 6-16, so get your bidding fingers limbered up and ready for action! Bidding starts at 7pm ET/4pm PT.
If you don’t win the auction, the wine is still available and just the thing for the holidays. Jancis Robinson, wine correspondent for the Financial Times commented in her review, “I would be very happy to pour [this wine] for friends.” So, whether you prefer a Pinot Noir or a Chardonnay, these wines not only taste fabulous but they also support our efforts to promote literacy because thanks to Twitter and Crushpad, five dollars from every bottle sold goes to Room to Read’s programs in India. But act soon, because a limited number of bottles were produced, and they’re flying out the door quickly.
Order your bottle of case of Fledgling Wine today »
Chapters are comprised of individuals who have made a long-term volunteer commitment to promoting Room to Read within their communities, and we depend on their network to achieve our fundraising goals. For more information about Room to Read events hosted by chapters in your area, we encourage you to regularly visit our events page.
Join us for events scheduled in:
Washington DC: December 8
Central New Jersey: January 13
Learn more about our chapter network »