Team First Book Houston

This website has been updated. 

About Team First Book Houston

What you will read and view below: The Team First Book Houston's 5 W's, Who? What? Where? When? Why? and How?   There are 2 videos, and both are REMI award winners from the World/Fest International Film Competition.


The mission of Team First Book Houston is to provide brand new books to students in low-income areas.  The pilot program process is called "The Agreement"© 2013-2018 in which the students from 3 years of age on up, agree to "read to others and teach others to read"© 2013-2018.  Our focus is to give the young students the responsibility for their reading education along with their teacher's instructions and practices.    

Who?

Team First Book Houston is a volunteer board working as a team since 2012 under First Book. First Book is an international literacy non-profit in Washington, D.C.  First Book and its' teams provide books, educational resources, and supplies to students in low-income areas. Team First Book Houston's focuses on the Greater Houston areas in low-income areas.  
Partners: Team First Book Houston volunteer Board members have formed partnerships with several outstanding companies and organizations. Our Partners have the same dedication, focus and goals.  Most of our partners have worked with Team First Book Houston since 2013.  Our focus is to come together to provide and help distribute brand new books from First Book to students in need.


               Our Partners are:

  • Cynthia Cisneros, Vice President of Community Affairs for Channel 13 abc in Houston, Texas.  Cynthia works with DISNEY, their parent company.  DISNEY has provided thousands of books to Team First Book Houston for Neff Early Learning Center. Our pilot program was started with Neff Early Learning Center in Sharpstown in 2013
  • Bill Palko, District Governor for all 62 Rotary Clubs in the Houston areas, spoke on the importance of reading in the early years of children's lives. in our first video: "Literacy for All Students"©2017-2018.  
  • Sharpstown's Rotarian and President, Jon King, and other member Rotarians spoke and distributed the books. 
  • Maria Bush,  Co-Founder of the Barbara Bush Houston Literacy Foundation, stated reasons why "our" children need new books.  President Julie Baker Finck, Ph.D.  of the Barbara Bush Houston Literacy Foundation is a dedicated partner to Team First Book Houston.  She continues to attend our annual Halloween book distributions at Neff Early Learning Center with so much knowledge. 
  • The President of the Rotary Club of Houston, Rick Olsen, was very impressed with "The Agreement"© 2013-2018. The Rotary Club of Houston is 108 years old.  He also said the 700 students taking responsibility for their reading education and teaching others to read, in English, was inspirational.
  • The Rotary Club of Houston donated money for new books for the students at the Ninfa Laurenzo Early Childhood Center in HISD for distribution in May 2018.
  • The North Shore Rotary Club donated money for books for the Galena Park and Cloverleaf schools students.
  • Monique Jonson-Garner Administrator for volunteers in Houston Independent School District

"Literacy for all students"© 2017-2018

Here is our 15-minute documentary, "Literacy for All Students", © 2017-2018. 

Team First Book Houston, the staff and students of the Jack J. Valenti School of Communication of the University of Houston have made this video together.  We won a Bronze REMI award for this video. The video was taken at the annual Halloween book distribution at Neff Early Learning Center. 

Please Donate Now

Now is your time! 
Your donation is an investment in "our" children
Our funding campaign will end
September 30, 2018
Please make your generous donation now. 
"We are bold, not for ourselves, but for our children." © 2012-2018
We are a 501 (c) 3 non-profit under First Book in Washington, D.C
All donations are spent on books.

What?

Team First Book Houston’s mission is to provide brand new books to students starting in the Early Learning Centers.*  We ask for donations on our funding page.below.  We also accept   donations for different corporations, organizations, individuals and Rotary Clubs in the Houston areas.  
*  There are 3 Rotarians on the Team First Book Houston.  Rotary is an    international Organization of more than 1 million volunteers.  Rotary International is made up  clubs in different countries all over the world.  We have focused on wiping out Polio.  *Our next focus is Literacy.    Team First Book Houston has fund raising periods. Our current funding period ends on September 30, 2018.  *  We take those funds and the Assistant Principal of Neff Early Learning Center and another person will order books from First Book.  These books are ordered based on the reading levels of the students. When another donor gives us a donation to go to a different entity, the process will be different and we will share the info of the process at the time the donation.* First Book offers some discounted prices on some books.Harvey.


Why?

Team First Book Houston donates 100% of all funds raised to purchase brand new books and supplies for Neff Early Learning Center.  We continue to help Neff Early Learning Center because they are using our pilot program, adjusting in accordance with needs and there is a change of the number os students.  We have verifiable facts and figures to substantiate the successes of "The Agreement"  2013-2018 and the dedication of Principal Gerardo leal, Ed. D., Ms. S. Jones. Ms. Vargas, Staff and teachers plus the hard work of the students.The need is great now because some of the books that were previously distributed have been damaged or destroyed by Hurricane Harvey.    

Background Facts: 

  • At the end of the Spring term of 2018 there were 214,175 in HISD.
  • 160,474 students in HISD are economically disadvantaged.
  • 38% of Houston children 5 years and younger live in poverty and that percentage have grown since Hurricane Harvey. 
  • On May 23, 2018, the National Conference of State Legislatures info on: Check out the new NCSL LegisBrief: A Look at Third Grade Reading Retention Policies
  • "Reading proficiently by the end of third grade has become a significant milestone in a student's educational trajectory as it marks the time when the focus is placed on reading to learn instead of learning to read.To encourage local schools and districts to take this milestone seriously, several states have enacted legislation that requires students not reading proficiently by the end of third grade to be retained."
  • NRG stadium holds right at 75,000 people.  Those 160,474 economcally disadvantaged students could fill up 2 stadiums the size of NRG stadium.
  • * At the time of writing this website, we could not obtain the number of students reading below grade level.  The Star tests were bing processed and no one was available.  In 2015, there were 72,000  students  reading below grade level.
  • If you are stopped at the Kirby red light where the walk over is placed,  you will see people walking into the stadium.  Each   one of those people represents a student who does reads below grade level.  NRG stadium holds 75,00 attendees.
  •  We distribute these  books to children's hospitals, including the Texas Children's Hospitals and another Children's Hospital that we are not allowed to use their name.  We also have given books to women's centers.
  • Since 2013, our team and partners have been able to obtain, sort and distribute more than $ 1,000,000.00 worth of books, retail value. 
  • The data collected from this pilot program for students in Pre-Kindergarten, Kindergarten, and First grades is proving that "Literacy for All Students" ©2017 is working.  
  • We are waiting to hear from HISD the most recent number of students reading below their grade level. The number we have is 72,000, read below their grade level. 72,000 students will almost fill NRG stadium to its' capacity. The need is unusually high since Hurricane Harvey.
  • Thousands of children and their families need to learn to read and speak in English. "Our" children are teaching their peers and parents now to read and speak English.
  • The staff members of schools record and maintain data collected through reading assessments. Team First Book Houston monitors the feedback to track how our students are progressing. This data is proving that "our" students are making verifiable progress.
  • Some of the first grade students at Neff Early Learning Center's reading scores are the highest for first grade students in Houston ISD. Data is so important to keep track of student progress.
  • Many of the books previously distributed were destroyed in Hurricane Harvey.
  • So many of our families are living in low-income areas.
  • Below is a actual conversation:
  • A 7 year-old student in the 1st grade was asked what would he do now that he could take home his brand new books: "I am a good reader now, but now I will become a great reader."   When he was asked, "what is your goal?" he responded with: "My goal is to become a heart doctor. I will fix people's hearts so they will feel good. And when they feel good, they will do good for others."  This is why we all work so hard!

"Eradicating Illiteracy"

Here is our 17-minute documentary, "Eradicating Illiteracy, 2015." 

Team First Book Houston, the staff and students of the Jack J. Valenti School of Communication of the University of Houston have won 3 GOLD REMI AWARDS from the WorldFest International Film Festival. At the April 2017 Gala, there were attendees from 74 different countries with over 4,500 submissions!   

DISNEY used this short documentary as part of their National Reading Campaign!

Please Donate Now

Now is your time. We thank our volunteers and partners 

for their commitment to provide 

"Literacy for All Student" ©2017

which is an investment in "our" children, 

and for everyone's generous donations! 

The need is so great! 

Our funding campaign will end

September 30, 2018

Please make your generous donation now. 

We are bold, not for ourselves, but for our children.©(2012-2018)

"Our" children deserve to be free of worry and learn to read! 

We are a 501 (c) 3 non-profit under First Book in Washington, D.C. 


Team First Book Houston works with many partners: First Book, Washington D.C.; Channel 13 abc; DISNEY; Richard Carranza, Superintendent of Houston ISD; Bill Palko, Rotary District Governor of 5890 with 62 Rotary Clubs, including Sharpstown, Houston, and North Shore, as well as other Rotary Clubs and Rotarians. 


We work with the students and faculty of the University of Houston's Jack J. Valenti School of Communication to create award-winning documentaries. 

  • The purpose of our documentaries is to inspire viewers from all over the world to give of their talents and time plus donations  to make "Literacy for All Students"  happen now!

  • Our documentaries capture the excitement of students receiving their new books while highlighting the importance of community, partnership, volunteerism, and literacy. 

We work with several other partners who are also determined to provide "Literacy for All Students" ©2017, including the Barbara Bush Houston Literacy Foundation, Home Depot, T. J. MAXX, Frost Bank, Kroger, Office Depot, GoDaddy, M Squared Climate Control (Michael Milton, Patrick Milton, Sr., and Marc Hall), Jon King, "After Hours Networking," and many others! 


Please Donate Now

Now is your time. We thank our volunteers and partners 

for their commitment to provide 

"Literacy for All Student" ©2017

which is an investment in "our" children, 

and for everyone's generous donations! 

The need is so great! 

Our funding campaign will end

September 30, 2018

Please make your generous donation now. 

We are bold, not for ourselves, but for our children.©(2012-2018)

"Our" children deserve to be free of worry and learn to read! 

We are a 501 (c) 3 non-profit under First Book in Washington, D.C. 

Contact Us

We'd Love to Hear from You!