Posted by Linda M. Flynn, District Literacy Chair
As we celebrate Rotary International’s Literacy theme during March, each club in our District is challenged to ask themselves the following question, 
What project(s) does our club have to support literacy?
Last fall’s article focused on some literacy statistics internationally, nationally and within our District. The plan for District literacy was also summarized.  
The District literacy plan includes encouraging clubs to consider taking on the Dictionary4Life project which the Rotary Club of West Ottawa is offering to expand and administer. I am very pleased to report that the Rotary Clubs of Prescott and Kingston-Waterfront have ordered dictionaries for this coming fall in addition to the continuing 8 Ottawa area clubs (West Ottawa, Nepean- Kanata, Ottawa Bytown, Ottawa, Stittsville, Orleans, South Nepean, Ottawa South) that are already involved in the project.  The District order was our largest order to date for 1,096 books. As you assess your club’s literacy projects please consider the Dictionary4Life project.  If you’d like evidence of how you can make a difference in a Grade 3 student’s life please view the winning one-minute video at
“For most of us reading and writing are as natural as breathing.  But nearly 800 million adults worldwide lack the literacy skills needed to complete a job application, understand a child’s report card, or read a prescription.” (Source: Rotary International and the International Reading Association Literacy Project Guide) This latter document is an excellent guide for any club looking to either start a project or augment an already vibrant literacy program within your club.
Your club might consider one or more of these successful Rotary club literacy projects:
Improve access to books and learning materials
  • Book donations
  • Dictionary donations
  • Library support
Support schools and teachers
  • Adopt a school
  • Teacher training
Enhance classroom learning
  •  Early childhood literacy
  • Adult literacy
  • Student mentoring
  • Concentrated language encounter (CLE)
Promote community development
  • Improve community health
  • Address special needs
(Source: Rotary International and the International Reading Association Literacy Project Guide)
As always, I would be pleased to speak to any District 7040 club about literacy. Please contact me at