LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (March 6, 2012) "“ Mitchell, Williams, Selig, Gates & Woodyard, P.L.L.C. has named Reach Out and Read Arkansas "“ an early literacy program that partners with doctors to prescribe books and encourage families to read together "“ as the firm's 2012 Take Time To Give primary charity. The law firm is donating $25,000 to Reach Out and Read to fund clinics with books and training on the Reach Out and Read model.
Along with a monetary donation, Mitchell Williams' staff and attorneys will volunteer throughout the year with Reach Out and Read. This will include "waiting-room readings" at area clinics and helping collect and distribute books.
Mitchell Williams' Take Time To Give program is the firm's community service initiative that provides monetary and volunteer support to civic and charitable organizations throughout Arkansas and the region. The program has supported more than 200 organizations since its formal launch in 2004. In 2010, Mitchell Williams launched a new website, TakeTimeToGive.com, to help raise awareness of Arkansas' many charitable organizations.
"We are thrilled to support Reach Out and Read Arkansas through our Take Time to Give program this year," said Harry Hamlin, Mitchell Williams' managing director. "Being read to as children is something many of us take for granted. Illiteracy is an intergenerational phenomenon affecting individuals, families, communities and regions. Reach Out and Read Arkansas is helping ensure that every Arkansas child enters kindergarten prepared with the skills needed to succeed."
Doctors, nurse practitioners and other medical professionals incorporate Reach Out and Read's evidence-based model into regular pediatric checkups, by advising parents about the importance of reading aloud and giving developmentally appropriate books to children. The program begins at the six-month checkup and continues through age 5, with a special emphasis on children growing up in low-income communities. Families served by Reach Out and Read are reading more often, and their children enter kindergarten with larger vocabularies and stronger language skills "“ leaving them better prepared to achieve their potential.
"We are so grateful to Mitchell Williams for providing these funds and for bringing awareness to our mission," says Mica Strother, president of the Reach Out and Read Arkansas Board of Directors. "Key findings reveal that parents served by Reach Out and Read are up to four times more likely to read aloud to their children. Children served by Reach Out and Read show significant developmental gains in language and a six-month developmental edge over their peers in the preschool years. They also score higher on vocabulary tests and school readiness assessments."
In Arkansas there are 27 Reach Out and Read Programs serving 40,372 children and distributing 61,320 books annually. Mitchell Williams' donation of $25,000 will help the organization provide the full, five-year program to 500 children.
Along with the primary charity program, Mitchell Williams will continue its support of nonprofit missions throughout the state through the Take Time To Give website and its social media outlets "“ Facebook.com/TakeTimeToGive and Twitter.com/TakeTimeToGive. Nonprofits who are looking for monetary support are encouraged to submit an online application at TakeTimeToGive.com/requests. Organizations who would like to submit events and information to post on the website can send information to Holly Hiett at firstname.lastname@example.org
About Mitchell Williams
Providing strategic counsel on a variety of sophisticated legal matters since 1954, Mitchell Williams combines decades of diverse professional experience with extensive relationships to offer clients across the United States the most comprehensive services possible. Today, the firm employs 85 attorneys from offices in Arkansas, Texas, New York and Washington, D.C. For more information, visit www.MitchellWilliamsLaw.com
About Reach Out and Read Arkansas
Reach Out and Read prepares America's youngest children to succeed in school by partnering with doctors to prescribe books and encourage families to read together. The program begins at the 6-month checkup and continues through age 5, with a special emphasis on children growing up in low-income communities. Families served by the nonprofit read together more often, and their children enter kindergarten with larger vocabularies and stronger language skills, better prepared to achieve their potential. To learn more about Reach Out and Read Arkansas or to help put books into the hands of children growing up without them, visit www.reachoutandreadarkansas.org