The Reading Nation Waterfall team represents three states (New Mexico, North Carolina, and Montana), five Native American tribes (The Crow Tribe of Montana, The Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians, The Lumbee Tribe of North Carolina, Northern Cheyenne, and Santo Domingo Pueblo), two national community organizations (Head Start and Little Free Libraries), and UNCG. The project team represents a robust and unique collaboration between tribal, public, school, national low-income school readiness program, national literacy experts, national community book exchange experts, and experienced and seasoned university researchers.
“Growing up in a Tribal home you experience the benefits of family members telling you stories of how things happened, for example, “How the skunk got his tail” or “Why the possum plays dead”. Tribal people know the benefits of storytelling to the young children in close proximity (sitting on grandma’s lap). We appreciative the efforts of UNC Greensboro in recognizing the benefits of reading to young children and wanting to get books into Tribal homes. We hope that this is only the beginning and in the future more Tribal programs will get the benefits of reading to children.”
— Tina Routh, President, National Indian Head Start Directors Association
“Books, especially those which encourage young children to read with their families, promote their engagement, curiosity and natural desire to learn and hear about something new. Children will automatically engage with books that are relevant to their world, and which they have immediate access to. The receipt of this grant will put more books in children’s hands, and therefore more opportunities for families to engage with each other and promote learning in our Native cultures and environments.”
— Jo Williams, Zone 5 Representative, National Indian Head Start Directors Association