Making an Impact Close to Home 

Pi Beta Phi believes reading always has been—and always will be—a powerful step toward a life of enduring impact. Our members seek to inspire a lifelong love of reading through Read > Lead > Achieve® literacy initiatives, fundraising events and activities, making a difference for children in communities across North America. 

Local Impact Grants help expand the reach of the Fraternity’s literacy work while also providing a way for Pi Phis to support reading programs and access to books for children close to home. As chapters and alumnae clubs fundraise for The Literacy Fund at Pi Beta Phi Foundation, they can nominate an organization in their community to receive a Local Impact Grant from our Foundation. The program allows clubs and chapters to direct 25% of their fundraising contributions to a literacy-focused nonprofit, matched dollar-for-dollar by a grant from our Foundation.  

In 2021, our Foundation provided $60,113.56 in Local Impact Grants to 30 organizations, bringing the total amount awarded to more than $743,500 since the program’s launch in 2013. Recipients include organizations such as Title I schools, tutoring and mentoring programs and community foundations. Grants are used to support literacy programs and purchase books for classroom and home libraries—providing reading materials for children who otherwise might not have access to quality, age-appropriate books. 

The Wisconsin Alpha Chapter nominated the Madison Reading Project to receive a Local Impact Grant. Fundraising Coordinator Sarah Burke said the grant would support the organization’s Books & Activity Kits program. “We send monthly kits filled with books and an art or STEM project to our community partners, serving more than 400 children in the area,” Sarah reported. 

Team First Book Philadelphia and the West Philadelphia Alliance for Children (WePAC), nominated by the Philadelphia-Main Line, Pennsylvania, Alumnae Club, said their grant would help reopen libraries and prepare students as they returned to in-person learning. “When the Philadelphia Public Schools shut down in March 2020, at least 2,400 books were checked out of our libraries,” explained Marni Fogelson, co-chair of Team First Book Philadelphia. “We anticipate we will need to replace many of those titles. The Foundation's support will allow us to remain flexible as we work to reopen our libraries and prepare for the 4,750 students we serve.” 

Still other organizations used their grants to better support their diverse communities. The Momentous Institute, nominated by the Dallas, Texas, Alumnae Club, said the funds would help increase its take-home collection of early childhood Spanish-language titles, better serving bilingual students. The House Tuscaloosa, nominated by the Tuscaloosa, Alabama, Alumnae Club, designated its grant to purchase children’s books written by Black authors for its community bookstore. 

Thank you to the Pi Beta Phi alumnae clubs and chapters that nominated organizations to receive Local Impact Grants—and congratulations to the grant recipients! Learn more about the ways Pi Beta Phi Foundation supports Pi Phi’s commitment to literacy here

 

2021 Local Impact Grant Recipients


Team First Book-Monroe County  
Nominated by the Bloomington, Indiana, Alumnae Club 
 
Literacy Coalition of Palm Beach County  
Nominated by the Boca Raton, Florida, Alumnae Club 
 
The Momentous Institute  
Nominated by the Dallas, Texas, Alumnae Club 
 
Project READ  
Nominated by the Dayton, Ohio, Alumnae Club 
 
Reach Out & Read Kansas City  
Nominated by the Greater Kansas City Alumnae Club 
 
Greenville Literacy Association  
Nominated by the Greenville, South Carolina, Alumnae Club 
 
The Children's Book Bank  
Nominated by the Lake Oswego-Dunthorpe, Oregon, Alumnae Club 
 
Alexandria Tutoring Consortium - Book Buddies  
Nominated by the Northern Virginia Alumnae Club 
 
Ayuda  
Nominated by the Northern Virginia Alumnae Club 
 
Hybla Valley Elementary (Educate Fairfax)  
Nominated by the Northern Virginia Alumnae Club 
 
Freedom School Oklahoma City  
Nominated by the Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, Alumnae Club 
 
Sunny Sands Elementary School Reading Program (The Foundation Palm Springs Unified School District)  
Nominated by the Palm Springs-Desert Cities, California, Alumnae Club 
 
Team First Book Philadelphia - WePAC - West Philadelphia Alliance for Children  
Nominated by the Philadelphia-Main Line, Pennsylvania, Alumnae Club 
 
Kids Need to Read - Our Shelves  
Nominated by the Phoenix, Arizona, Alumnae Club 
 
The Elizabeth Kates Foundation - Kate's Readers  
Nominated by the Richmond, Virginia, Alumnae Club 
 
Access Books Bay Area  
Nominated by the San Jose, California, Alumnae Club 
 
Northern Moore Family Resource Center - Hope Academy Preschool  
Nominated by the Sandhills, North Carolina, Alumnae Club 
 
Early Learning Coalition of Sarasota County - Storybook Street  
Nominated by the Sarasota-Manatee, Florida, Alumnae Club 
 
Page Ahead  
Nominated by the Seattle, Washington, Alumnae Club 
 
Assistance League San Pedro-South Bay  
Nominated by the South Bay, California, Alumnae Club 
 
Little Bit Foundation - 1-2-3-Read!, Books & Buddies  
Nominated by the St Louis, Missouri, Alumnae Club 
 
The House Tuscaloosa - Homestretch Campaign  
Nominated by the Tuscaloosa, Alabama, Alumnae Club 
 
Tucson Festival of Books  
Nominated by the Arizona Alpha Chapter 
 
Martin Luther King Center Indianapolis - Read to Lead  
Nominated by the Indiana Gamma Chapter 
 
Kansas Big Brothers Big Sisters, INC - Beyond School Walls  
Nominated by the Kansas Beta Chapter 
 
Winbourne Elementary (Foundation for East Baton Rouge School System)  
Nominated by the Louisiana Beta Chapter 
 
Stillwater Head Start (United Community Action Program, Inc)  
Nominated by the Oklahoma Beta Chapter 
 
Boys & Girls Club of Brazos County - BookUpTexas  
Nominated by the Texas Eta Chapter 
 
The Maasai Girls Education Fund - MGEF Scholarship Program  
Nominated by the Virginia Iota Chapter 
 
Madison Reading Project  
Nominated by the Wisconsin Alpha Chapter 


Photo from the Louisiana Beta Chapter which nominated Winbourne Elementary School to receive both an FDS500 grant and a Local Impact Grant in 2021. Louisiana Beta members spend time each week with Winbourne’s first and second grade students, working on literacy, writing and reading comprehension skills through the Champions are Readers® program.

Published March 28, 2022