Project Objectives

The Read Across Jamaica (RAJ) Literacy Project was initiated in 2004 in the Parish of St. Elizabeth. Following the completion of a student research project examining the education system in Jamaica, it was discovered that many students were advancing to the next grade level without a mastery of basic literacy skills.

The RAJ literacy initiative complements the goals of the Jamaica Teachers Association Non-Governmental Agencies (NGOs) and other nonprofit organizations to improve educational outcomes for children and engage the community in their efforts.

The Literacy Project involves the coordination and facilitation of annual reading day events along with other literacy programs through partnerships with schools, communities, parents, businesses, global sponsors and policy makers to keep young people engaged in reading. RAJ provides technical assistance, training and motivational workshops designed to introduce creative methods of engaging children in reading.

Book drives

We collect reading materials through a national campaign in the U.S. and ship them to Jamaica through our partners. Students are encouraged to write letters of appreciation describing how the books or activities impacted their interest in reading or learning.

Community outreach

Our Literacy Ambassadors participate in a variety of activities to help promote the mission of RAJ and encourage our children in their personal development. Our past awareness campaigns include Parent Month; Family Literacy Night MLK Day: A day of Volunteerism; and the Read Across Jamaica Day & Island-wide Bus Tour during Education Week.

Desired outcomes

  • Facilitate literacy circles inclusive of parent and community stakeholders
  • Increase awareness of literacy organizations doing work in Jamaica and align resources
  • Increase in mastery of basic literacy skill sets to 85 percent or better
  • Increase opportunities for volunteer engagement
  • Promote cultural awareness and understanding