First, I can not thank our volunteers and donors enough for their interest and participation in supporting the mission and goals of MagazineLiteracy.org, the first and only global, magazine industry-wide literacy campaign for children and families.
We have accomplished so much thanks to the commitment and self-initiative of hundreds of individuals. Still, we have so much to do, with your help, to meet our full promise to children and families who want to learn and love to read magazines.
We have learned many lessons, doing many things well, and some things not so well. One area that needs improvement is our communication and follow-up with the volunteers and supporters who are so generous in offering their time, ideas, dollars, magazines, and passion.
Due to many intense economic and social forces, we face a perfect storm of challenge, need, opportunity, and responsibility. As an all volunteer organization with a global vision, the interest in our work and the demands placed on our organization have exceeded our capacity serve them. We risk neglecting a timely opportunity to deploy willing volunteers and to tap generous benefactors to meet local literacy needs, while addressing global environmental challenges.
We are grateful for the patience of our stakeholders while we rethink and re-engineer MagazineLiteracy.org through these “growing pains.” We are stronger and even more determined to succeed and to better prepare and deploy our volunteers and other resources in community service across the U.S., and around the world. This is both an opportunity and a responsibility for MagazineLiteracy.org.
We still have a journey ahead of us to strengthen our ability to provide steady, sustainable support to our volunteers and donors. As we develop this capability, we want to continue to organize effective, successful community based magazine literacy projects. We can provide access to collaboration and social networking tools and information to help community literacy projects to grow and prosper, but we need our supporters to be the seeds of this vast endeavor. We need to rely on the dedication and the self-initiative of our volunteers and donors to self-educate, and to self-organize, and to lead and promote magazine literacy projects that identify and meet the needs of children and families in their own communities. From that will emerge a massive marketplace of great ideas shared between and among local MagPower Teams, using the tools and communications channels available at MagazineLiteracy.org.
Our first task is to organize individual volunteers into community teams, so they can work together to meet local needs. We will utilize an online team collaboration tool, and other methods, to organize each of our community volunteer MagTeams and to serve as a repository for information and to foster communication across local groups.
Many supporters have already organized very important magazine literacy projects in their own communities. We want to hear about and celebrate these projects, as models for others to replicate. Please be sure to contact us with the details so we can post your stories.
About ten years ago, I walked from Washington DC to Boston – twenty miles a day, for thirty days. I could not imagine how I would begin, yet alone complete such a walk of one million footsteps. How did I do it? How did I get to my destination over such a vast distance of so many horizons? One step at a time. Let these be the first steps in your so important and meaningful journey to find and to feed children and families hungry to read. Working and walking together, we are changing the world, one magazine, one child, one family at a time. Thank you again for your passion to serve.