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Maria Federico

A Family That Reads Together…

Maria Federico brings her youngest children to the Valencia Park/Malcolm X Branch Library twice a month to attend the Families for Literary programs (FFL) – an activity that is making a big difference for her son, Oscar Acevedo.

“He won’t have the same trouble I did in school,” Maria says. When he received a book from FFL, Maria told staff, “Oscar loved the book of poetry so much…he hasn’t put it down since! He took it to school the next day and I have to tell him to put it aside so he can go to sleep. But I really don’t mind. I’m so happy he is reading.”

FFL is operated by READ/San Diego, the library’s award-winning adult literacy program, and introduces low-literate adults and their families to the library’s literacy services. It teaches parents and grandparents to be a child’s first and foremost teacher.

Enrolled families attend classes twice a month and are encouraged to read at home. However, many homes, particularly those with low-literate adults, do not have children’s books to read. With a generous grant from QUALCOMM, approximately 500 children and parents/caregivers—110 families in all—recently received 3,000 new books to build home libraries.

Showing that the program is for the entire family, Maria even brings three-month-old Anna Victoria to class. As a mother, she is excited and pleased with how much the program is helping all of them. As a result of attending the family literacy program, Maria has more patience and more confidence as a parent and proudly reports that, “the whole family reads more.”