Literacy is a vital skill. Children who read well are more likely to be successful than those who do not achieve literacy. In fact, children who struggle to read and write are more likely to be unemployed, face food scarcity, and end up incarcerated as adults.
This year, Oregon learned that our children aren't meeting the expected standards for literacy across the board. According to the Oregon Dept. of Education, fifty-four percent of third graders failed to meet the reading benchmark. Low literacy rates in Oregon matter; reports have shown that students who fail to meet literacy benchmarks by the fourth grade are FOUR TIMES more likely to drop out of high school than students who met the mark (of course, we'd like to see the kiddos surpass that mark!).
As avid readers, writers, and editors, we simply cannot allow this to happen, and decided that we wanted to help Oregonians bridge the gap. We have decided that the best way we can help is to bolster the resources available to students in Oregon.
Starting on 11/1/2019, Unsolicited Press began designing and selling apparel using Amazon's Merch program. The apparel, ranging from tank tops to sweaters, features snarky and inspiring quotes and designs. The team has decided that $5 from every sale will be donated to SMART Reading (https://smartreading.org/). Our goal is to hit $5,000 in donations.
The apparel is available on Amazon (search for Unsolicited Press apparel). Some of the designs are below. We are adding more designs every day. This fundraising effort will continue until we hit the $5,000 mark.
If you choose to buy a shirt, we would love for you to take a picture with you wearing it and share it with us via Twitter or Instagram. Help us help Oregon's students.