Communities that Read: A CMPC initiative that seeks to reduce reading gaps in local communities

According to a study prepared by the Universidad de los Andes in Chile, 96% of children in first grade do not know the letters of the alphabet. As a way to address this literacy crisis, the CMPC Foundation came up with the Communities that Read plan, which trains corporate tutors to teach families about how they can help their children learn to read.  

In the districts of Puente Alto, Estación Central, Los Ángeles, Nacimiento, Laja and Villa Mininco, training courses for families were simultaneously started by the 36 corporate tutors, CMCP collaborators who voluntarily prepared to deliver reading tools to the 127 beneficiary families of the plan.

Among the group of tutors who gathered at the CMCP plant in Puente Alto was Jorge Navarrete, General Manager of Biopackaging of the company. He arrived early in the morning on Thursday to tutor a family from Puente Alto. “This is a very nice activity, both for them and for us, the tutors. Hopefully more people will get excited to help alleviate a problem that has grown quite large, which is children’s literacy,” said Navarrete, who already knows that in September he will have the next training session with the family he is assisting.

Elizabeth Carvajal lives in Estación Central and learning to read has been a difficult task for her seven-year-old son and the family. “It was a very informative activity with a different methodology and entertaining texts that are new to most people. So, ultimately it not only serves the children, but also helps us form closer bonds with our children,” she said.

In this training meeting, which lasted approximately 90 minutes, the company tutors gave all the tools and materials to the families, which included a storybook, the workbook and elements to make the lessons more educational. Afterward each family will apply these new skills with their children, thus helping them learn or improve their reading ability.