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Reading Is Fundamental & Pitney Bowes Kick Off 2012 Children’s Literacy Partnership

WASHINGTON, April 12, 2012 — Pitney Bowes joined Reading Is Fundamental (RIF) in launching this year’s partnership supporting children’s literacy with a Family Literacy Night celebration at Stepping Stones Museum for Children in Norwalk, Conn. (Photo gallery.)

“With Pitney Bowes supporting us, we’ve been able to reach countless children and families inspiring new generations of lifelong readers,” said Carol H. Rasco, president and CEO of RIF. “There is only one book for every 300 kids living in poverty in the United States. Pitney Bowes and its dedicated employees are providing us resources to not only get books in the hands of kids but to engage families in activities that can spark a real love of reading.”

As part of Pitney Bowes annual Global Volunteer Month program, employees joined RIF and a record-breaking 1,000-plus children and parents on April 5, 2012, giving away 800 free books and participating in numerous activities, including read-alouds, themed around global communications. Rep. Jim Himes of Connecticut’s 4th District and Norwalk Mayor Richard Moccia also joined the festivities, with Rep. Himes reading to a roomful of children.

This month, Pitney Bowes employees will bring the program to schools and after-school programs in more than 15 U.S. cities, as well as the United Kingdom, Canada, Australia and India. Volunteers will use the Share the Message: READ! activity guides developed, with funding by the Pitney Bowes Foundation, for their outreach.

The three guides – Animal Communications, Languages of the World, and Communicating Through the Arts – each feature a children’s book and related arts and crafts activities that are appropriate for students in grades K-6. RIF has also developed a selection of age-appropriate books that relate to each of the themes.

“There’s nothing like seeing the smile on a child’s face as they discover a new world in a book,” said Mike Monahan, chief financial officer, Pitney Bowes, who is also a Reading Is Fundamental board member. “Our employees are engaging children in reading, which is so critical to their development, while they’re also getting a rewarding experience. It’s a win-win.”

About Reading Is Fundamental, Inc. (RIF): Reading Is Fundamental (RIF) delivers free books and literacy resources to children and families in underserved communities in the United States. By giving children the opportunity to own a book, RIF inspires them to become lifelong readers and achieve their full potential. As the nation’s largest children’s literacy nonprofit, RIF has placed 400 million books in the hands of more than 35 million children since it was established in 1966. Learn more and help RIF provide books to kids who need them most, visit RIF.org.

About Pitney Bowes: Delivering more than 90 years of innovation, Pitney Bowes provides software, hardware and services that integrate physical and digital communications channels. Long known for making its customers more productive, Pitney Bowes is increasingly helping other companies grow their business through advanced customer communications management. Pitney Bowes is a $5.3 billion company with 29,000 employees worldwide. Pitney Bowes: Every connection is a new opportunity™. www.pb.com

About the Pitney Bowes Foundation: The Pitney Bowes Foundation is a private entity with a mission to support education, literacy and the diverse community interests of Pitney Bowes employees. We commit our resources to closing the achievement gap and preparing the workforce of tomorrow. For information about these programs and other Pitney Bowes Corporate Citizenship and Philanthropy initiatives, please visit pb.com/community.

About Stepping Stones Museum for Children: Stepping Stones Museum for Children in Norwalk, Conn., is an award-winning, private, non-profit 501(c)(3) children’s museum committed to broadening and enriching the lives of children and families. Located on five acres in Mathews Park, the recently expanded LEED Gold certified museum encompasses five hands-on galleries, a state-of-the-art multimedia theater, a Family and Teacher Resource Center, café and retail store. Stepping Stones also offers onsite educational events and workshops, school and group programs and traveling resources for schools, libraries and youth-serving organizations. For more information, visit http://www.steppingstonesmuseum.org.

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Media Contact:
Ashley Lengen
Weber Shandwick for Reading Is Fundamental
469.375.0207
alengen@webershandwick.com

Angel D. Peoples
Pitney Bowes, External Communications
203.351.6475
angel.peoples@pb.com 
 

Reading Is Fundamental & Pitney Bowes Kick Off 2012 Children’s Literacy Partnership