Why we do it
We have a vision that every child in every community will have the skills and confidence needed to make positive choices for their lives and their futures. If we can get kids excited about learning and parents excited about helping them learn in the early years, then it’s more likely they’ll succeed. From job qualifications to higher levels of education, reading is one of the most important factors for future success.
Camesha Cox is the Founder of The Reading Partnership. She has nurtured this project since its inception.
Camesha is an Ontario-certified teacher with a master’s degree from the University of Toronto and has been a resident of the Kingston-Galloway-Orton Park (KGO) community for over 20 years.
In 2010, she successfully ran a school-wide literacy intervention program in London, UK, for high school students who were reading at a primary level. While there, she learned that literacy is more than just supporting students while they’re at school; it also needs to be done at home with parents. With growing class sizes and a large percentage of students who need one-on-one help, teachers are simply too strained to provide all of the support a child requires to reach the literacy levels needed to succeed.
Returning home to Toronto, Camesha knew that her community could be helped by a similar literacy program. Having spent years working in youth employment within the community, she saw that many of young people she worked with struggled to fill out a simple application form. This was alarming and got even more alarming when she looked into the local EQAO scores within the community. Armed with the drive to fix this problem, she began working on The Reading Partnership.
In 2015, Camesha was honoured with a Vital People Award presented by The Toronto Community Foundation. This allowed her to complete an Executive Program for Non-Profit Leaders at Stanford University’s Graduate School of Business in California.
The Reading Partnership is a project on Tides Canada’s shared platform, which supports on-the-ground efforts to create uncommon solutions for the common good. Tides Canada is a national Canadian charity dedicated to a healthy environment, social equity, and economic prosperity. The Reading Partnership is committed to principles of dignity, independence, integration, and equal opportunity.