With Chicago’s large population, only 63% are literate. This means that the remaining 37% of adults are unable to fill out job applications or other forms crucial to their every day life. Open Books, a Chicago-based organization, utilizes volunteers and donations to help combat illiteracy in Chicago and help bring illiteracy statistics down. Open Books operates a bookstore and holds programs to promote literacy throughout Chicago.
The bookstore collects donated used books and sells them both in their store and online. The sales from these books help support funding for the programs Open Books holds. On the other end of the spectrum, Open Books holds several events to raise awareness of illiteracy in the city. With the help of volunteers, these events help lead others to the bookstore where their donations continue the cycle of fighting illiteracy.
Their upcoming event “Literacy Olympics” is June 14. There will be complimentary food and beverages, along with literacy themed competitions to help Open Books win up to $15,000 in prize money. The event is located at 213 W. Institute Pl., and will be from 6 to 9 pm. $15 recommended entry, or $25 recommended entry and contest playing privileges.