I don’t usually do this but I’m asking for donations for something near and dear to my heart - adult literacy. I checked with Nabiki, who check with Lee and they said it was okay if I posted this request.
As of 2012, 45% of Canadians were reading below a 6th grade level. The US isn’t much better - according to a study conducted in April 2013 by the U.S. Department of Education and the National Institute of Literacy, 21% of adults in the U.S. read below a 5th grade level, and 19% of high school graduates can’t read. Adult literacy issues can not only affect a person’s self-esteem, but also his or her ability to get a job, and even to perform mundane day-to-day tasks we take for granted like reading a recipe, filling out a form or reading street signs when we’re trying to find an address.
My ability to read has always been a gift, and one that came easily to me. I was and am transported to other places and other worlds through the books I read and the places and characters I create through my own writing. On a professional level, if I need to learn new information I can read and assimilate what I need to know fairly quickly. Now I want to help others get the same gift I have.
To that end, I’m going to try and write a novel from scratch in 72 hours to raise money for the YMCA Muskoka’s adult literacy programs. Yes, you heard that right - I and 39 other
raving lunatics dedicated writers are spending the July 10th weekend at the Muskoka Novel Marathon trying to write as much as we can between 8 p.m. Friday night and 8 p.m. Monday night.
The Marathon is an annual fundraiser for the YMCA Muskoka, which offers free instruction in reading, writing, math, computer skills, life skills and English as a second language, helping about 200 people per year. So in addition to getting to hang out with a bunch of other writerly types who will also be enduring sleep deprivation, occasional technical difficulties and characters who won’t do what we want them to do, I’ll be raising funds for this amazing organization.
I really hope you’ll consider sponsoring me, even if it’s just for a couple of bucks. My goal is to raise $500 and I’m already over halfway there. And, if I raise $1,000 or more, my spot in next year’s marathon is guaranteed! To donate, you can go to my fundraising page at https://www.canadahelps.org/en/pages/2015-muskoka-novel-marathon-for-ymca-muskoka-liter/.
Please note that any donations made through this page go directly to the YMCA, and you will get a tax receipt. (And even though it says “CanadaHelps”, the site can accept donations from outside Canada as well.) If you want more info on the marathon itself, you can find it at http://www.muskokanovelmarathon.com/ or you can ask me.
Thanks for your support!