Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Campaign launched today to address growing illiteracy: World Literacy Foundation

Campaign launched today to address growing illiteracy

MMD Newswire: 8.19.2014

The International community received a warning today to lift its efforts to improve literacy rates.

The next generation will suffer from an even greater economic and social impact if we don't act now. Speaking in Los Angeles today at the launch of the campaign for International Literacy Day, the Chief Executive Officer of the World Literacy Foundation, Mr Andrew Kay said both Government and the community need to focus more on addressing the high level of illiteracy.

Nearly 22% of people in America are illiterate or have low level reading skills and the rates are three times greater in a developing country. Mr Kay said a person's reading and writing ability can impact many aspects of their life, such as opportunities for future education, their income earning capacity, their health and welfare, and their ability to overcome poverty and disadvantage. He cited the long-term cost to an economy due to illiteracy as lost productivity and lower wages. We need to ensure every child completes their education with strong reading and writing skills, which is the ticket to future success in further education and employment.

International Literacy Day is a UNESCO day aimed at raising attention and awareness of the importance of literacy in our day to day lives.

"We must ensure no child grows up in modern world with their futures limited by the blight of illiteracy"

"We need to ensure that in our lifetime we eliminate illiteracy in the world," Mr Kay said in the same way that more than one hundred years ago, we knew we had to eradicate polio and tuberculosis if children were to flourish... so now in the 21st century we must ensure no child grows up unable to read and write.

Today, at the launch of a community engagement campaign leading up to International Literacy Day on September 8, Mr Kay said we need to draw attention to this serious problem and ensure that the Government makes literacy a high priority and remains committed to improving literacy rates each year. With 500 days before the end of the eight UN Millennium Development Goals, sadly 70 millions of children still don't have access to education.

Mr Kay said we need for stronger collaboration between governments, schools, businesses and the community to ensure the issue of illiteracy doesn't fall between the cracks.

He asked people to run a localized event or activity to celebrate International Literacy Day and raise greater community awareness about the importance of literacy.

They can register their event or activity on

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