Rebecca Constantino

Rebecca Constantino is kind of like Santa Claus, if you happen to be an inner-city school library in need of books, and can picture the trunk of her car as a giant sleigh. And the California schools need her to keep delivering book to them.

Why? California ranks dead last in the nation when it comes to funding for school libraries. At just over $8.00 per student, that's not even enough to buy one copy of a Harry Potter book. Which is where Rebecca comes in. Although it started with her driving from school to school delivering donated books, her organization, Access Books, has now placed more than a million books on school shelves in Los Angeles, and is looking for ways to spread across the state.

But why does it matter? Literacy, in case you need to be told, is absolutely essential to success in life. It is not the goal, but the tool that allows people to learn, communicate and successfully contribute to the world around them. And children learn to read by reading. It's that simple.

We know that California has more problems than most states, but raising generations of kids who can't read just isn't going to make it any better. Thankfully, Rebecca can make it better, especially if you help her.

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This article was written for the August / September issue of JUST CAUSE Magazine. You can get a FREE subscription through Zinio.com.

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