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What authors & others
are saying about SFA.

'I'm in and I love it!'
Thank you so much SFA. What you are doing is just absolutely wonderful and I am so honored to be a part of helping in this way. You are a jewel! Keep me updated on everything. Deborah Simpson
As an author, one of the main reasons I write is to entertain people, to make them happy, and give them a world they love being in and escaping to. Beyond this dream, that a book can help a fellow human
being along the path to literacy is an incredibly beautiful, meaningful and deeply rewarding gift. I am very, very proud and truly honored to be a member of Shadow Forest Authors.
–Rai Aren, co-author of 'Secret of the Sands'
I am pleased to be a member of the Shadow Forest Authors. As an author I love the idea of books winging their way to every corner of the globe. I love to think that
one of my books might enrich someone’s life, as writing those books have enriched mine.
As a reader, I know I would forsake TV, computer, radio, and movies before I’d give up books. Other forms of entertainment and intellectual pursuit will sometimes enhance the book, but they will never replace it. Thank you, SFA for this opportunity to be a part of bringing pleasure to others through books. Eunice Boeve
I love SFA because the more we can encourage others to read books the better. Reading serious fiction and books for intelligent readers has declined drastically in the
last ten years or so. I love sending books to others and encouraging them to read. SFA helps wonderfully with that, and provides me with a little publicity as well. Great venture. Keep up the good work. Joe Cowley.
What a wonderful idea - I am delighted to contribute. Everyone should have a pile of unread books beside their bed!
Trish Clark
Although my name is nothing special, but still I want to help in my own little way and be a part of this great endeavour. I admire and respect your attentiveness to those who are in needs. I really am so happy
to be a member of Shadow Forest Authors. God bless you, SFA!
Ernesto Pangilinan Santiago
Literacy has never been so important in the world we live. In any society, everyone especially children should be able to read and write so their knowledge may one
day contribute to the general well-being of humankind. Thanks to Shadow Forest Authors and all the wonderful Organisations who look for new and used books as well as eBooks to distribute them where they are urgently needed, we may hope that one day, everyone will have access to all the knowledge accumulated since writing exists. Donate to such a great cause is therefore one of our duties.
Thank you SFA for the opportunity to donate my work through your fantastic program. The stellar work you are doing is rarely recognized and it is an honor to be involved.
Aaron Hoopes - author of 'Breathe Smart'
This is one of the most worthy organizations I've ever encountered. In the written word, we find inspiration, courage, laughter, hope and love. Books declare the best of who and what we are as the human race; Shadow Forest
spreads that vision throughout the world. Now, what could be better than that?
Ann B Keller - author of 'Briggen
This is a wonderful organization you've created here. Illiteracy is such a huge issue all around the world and anything to help promote reading and learning, I'm definitely up for.
Please keep up the great work. I'm glad to be apart of a great system to help change people's lives for the better!
Rae Lori - author of 'The Eye of Alloria'
This is a good idea getting books to people who have none or who have little opportunity to get them, it furthers their reading skills and promotes the written word to many other people
in this age of the internet. I think everyone should read and have access to books of many types and topics. And by improving other peoples reading ability, maybe they can then start to write and tell their story? I am a firm believer in encouraging not just in other people reading but them writing as well. Keep up the good work, I’m so happy to be a part of this.
Nick Armbrister - author of 'Her name is hope'
Having been a teacher for 20 years, I can only applaud what you are doing to promote literacy around the world, whilst also encouraging an appreciation and enjoyment of the written word. In this age of computer games and digital T.V., the more
exposure to books that youngsters, in particular, can get - whether in electronic or paper form - the better. The more they can read, the more they can expand their vocabulary and learn 'correct' grammar - at least, that is my hope! I wish you every success in your future efforts.
Helena Harper - author of 'It's a Teacher's Life'
Even though I am a new 10yr old author, I am capable of doing what other people older than me are doing. I feel honored of working to be a part of Shadow Forest Authors, and for allowing me to express myself freely. I have chosen MOSI as the
charity I plan to work with, as I am seriously willing to take an active part of helping by starting my own small business of making gem bracelets and bookmarks, so far I have about 100 now, but work on them daily. In October I will sell them at my book event and send the money to MOSI, as well as my books. I have been scheduling lots of school speaking events and along side of promoting my books I will include SFA and MOSI to help spread the word and see how we can push a little harder each time. Actions speak for themselves, I may be far, but close enough to find my way there. You can count on me now and later!
Shanaya Fastje - author of 'Mystery School' books
I am truly honored to be a part of something that gives to the world-wide community of readers such as this organization. Writing for me is not only a way to express who I really am but I really hope to entertain and
inspire others. A thank you to everyone involved!
Christina Noll - author of 'Saving Rose'
For me, writing my book was an amazing experience, a journey that I feel has allowed me to truly discover who I am and what I want to accomplish in life. Knowing that people
who buy a copy can then take it home and read the tales is one thing, but the knowledge that, through Shadow Forest Authors, I can help those who are underprivileged take pleasure in something that they would otherwise have no access to is the richest of all rewards. Thank you, SFA, and keep up the good work!"
Richard Sutherland, author of 'The Unitary Authority of Ersatz'

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Believe it or not, you can read it.

I cdnuolt blveiee taht I cluod aulaclty uesdnatnrd waht I was rdanieg The phaonmneal pweor of the hmuan mnid Aoccdrnig to a rscheearch at Cmabrigde Uinervtisy, it deosn't mttaer inwaht oredr the ltteers in a wrod are, the olny iprmoatnt tihng is taht the frist and lsat ltteer be in the rghit pclae. The rset can be a taotl mses and you can sitll raed it wouthit a porbelm. Tihs is bcuseae the huamn mnid deos not raed ervey lteter by istlef, but the wrod as a wlohe. Amzanig huh? yaeh and I awlyas thought slpeling was ipmorantt.........................



Welcome to Shadow Forest Authors
The Fellowship of Authors and Supporters for charity.

Our mission at SFA, to encourage every author worldwide and from every genre to donate just one copy of their title to fill a void in reading materials and get both paperback books and e-books where they are urgently needed. Authors and supporters standing together to make a difference, our humble shadows speaking volumes.

What do SFA Authors and Supporters contribute?

SFA authors donate a copy of their title to a SFA beneficiary, who places books in much needed hands. See Support Us and Contact pages for information and to be listed on SFA.

Authors do not have to list with SFA to donate books. SFA would appreciate you adding a note to a beneficiary, acknowledging that you support SFA.

Everyone can help
SFA supporters can Adopt an author or authors, purchasing their titles to be donated to an SFA beneficiary.
Encourage Authors by leaving comments
Join our Forum
Spread the word about SFA and our beneficiaries.
Sign up for our newsletter. See our Support Us page for information.

SFA Beneficiaries
The Australian Literacy and Numeracy foundation - Australia
Got Books - USA
Book Aid International
- UK

Adult Reading Assistance Scheme - New Zealand
World Public Library - USA
Read Between the bars - USA
The Women’s Prison Book Project - USA
Mission Australia - Australia

Prison Book Program - USA
Books To Prisoners - USA
My One School Inc - USA
Books to Prisoners Olympia - USA
Education Aid - UK
These foundations have agreed to be SFA beneficiaries and support our venture to get books where they are needed.
More charitable foundations will be listed with their approval.
For more information, see our Beneficiaries page.
Listen to what Patrick Stewart has to say.
Sean Astin on the National Centre for Familly Literacy

The cost of Illiteracy in Asia.
End Our Literacy Crisis
The only practical, proven way to guarantee every child or adult student can learn to read English and End Our Literacy Crisis.

'Let's End Our Literacy Crisis', the title of a revolutionary book, tells it all and we can end the illiteracy crisis! This book convincingly answers questions, based upon the most statistically accurate and extensive study ever commissioned by the U.S. government. 92 million U.S. adults, 47% of them, cannot read and write well enough to hold an above-poverty-level-wage job. A later study proved that 40% or more of the employees in most U.S. businesses are functional illiterates. Statistics from other countries are almost certain to be similar.

Let's End Our Literacy Crisis also explains:
(1) Seven reasons why most of us do not realize how extensive functional illiteracy is.
(2) How serious the financial, emotional and physical problems that illiterates must constantly endure.
(3) How illiteracy is costing each U.S. adult who can read at least $3700 each year for government programs that illiterates use, for higher consumer prices because of the cost of recruiting and training functional illiterates, and for their mistakes and inabilities in the workplace, for juvenile delinquency and crime directly related to illiteracy. English illiteracy in other countries undoubtedly incurs similar costs.
(4) Most importantly, it details a proven method of completely and permanently ending most English illiteracy, not only for 92 million or more Americans but also for hundreds of millions of English-speaking people around the world who cannot read English.

As you may know, English is used by more people as a native or as a second language than any other language in the world. This method of ending English illiteracy has been recommended by dozens of scholars of English and of other languages for 247 years and has been proven effective in more than 300 languages, but it has never been tried in English! In 295 of the 300 languages, 95% of them, the students became fluent readers in less than three months. It requires most of the 53% of U.S. students who become functionally literate from two to four years of the present reading instruction.

How will all of us who can read benefit by ending our literacy crisis?
You will greatly benefit if you are concerned that a friend or relative is or, after the presently inadequate schooling, may become functionally illiterate and want to spare them the suffering and problems illiteracy brings.
You object to needlessly paying a comparatively large portion of your income for illiteracy, at least $3700 each year per U.S. adult.
You are a teacher who is frustrated by knowing that about half of your students will never become fluent readers with present teaching methods.
You have financial interest in an organization being hurt by functionally illiterate workers.
You have financial interest in an organization which prepares or sells written material , since functional illiterates are not customers of the organization.
You have financial interest in an organization being hurt by competition with more literate foreign workers.
You feel compassion for 92 million in the U.S. and 100s of millions elsewhere who are functionally illiterate in English.
You want to improve communication between language groups and thereby lessen many of the international conflicts.

Read Bob C Cleckler's book - Let's end our illiteracy Crisis -
Get one also for a friend.


Monday, 25 January 2010

$11 million to improve Adult Literacy
Premier David Bartlett today announced a new $11 million action plan for adult literacy.

“This is a massive investment in the future of our economy and our skills base.

“There is nothing more limiting for an adult than to have poor literacy skills.

“I want every Tasmanians to have the ability to get a job and have a decent quality of life.

“Increased workforce participation means increased productivity both of which are key drivers of our economy,” Mr Bartlett said.

“Adult literacy is an essential skill. This action plan will help adults with reading difficulties have more opportunities and do things most of us take for granted such as reading to our children.

“None of us wants a Tasmania where people miss out on participating fully in our wonderful lifestyle because they struggle to read.”

Speaking at the official opening of the Rosny Learning and Information Network Centre (LINC) today the Premier said the Tasmanian Adult Literacy Action Plan aimed to address the high proportion of adult Tasmanians with low literacy skills.

“Australian Bureau of Statistics figures show that around half of the Tasmanian population aged 15-74 lack the literacy skills needed to cope with the demands of everyday life and work,” Mr Bartlett said.

“Too many Tasmanians are missing the opportunities brought about by our changing economy because they lack basic literacy skills. This isn’t acceptable and it’s time to take action.

“The plan contains three major strategies for improving the literacy skills of Tasmanians. They are: the establishment of an informal community and workplace network of adult literacy support; setting up a state-wide team of literacy coordinators and volunteers, and, the development of key indicators to measure improvements in adult literacy support.

“$6.6 million will be invested over four years to extend the Adult Literacy Coordinator network throughout Tasmania.

“Up to 16 extra Literacy Coordinators will be employed to bring together a trained team of volunteer tutors with training provided free of charge.

“The Action Plan will also provide a more coordinated approach to literacy support, bringing together LINCs, Child and Family Centres, Online Access Centres, Community Houses, the Tasmanian Polytechnic, Tasmanian Academy, Tasmanian Skills Institute and employers to create a state-wide network of access to literacy support.

Other key actions in the plan include:

• The establishment of a $1 million a year Adult Literacy Investment Fund over four years to fund programs in workplaces and communities.

• Providing additional literacy support to apprentices and trainees by extending the literacy and numeracy support program at the Tasmanian Skills Institute.

• Providing more training in adult literacy support for Government frontline service staff

• Working with the Australian Government on providing literacy support and training for job seekers.

• Raising community awareness of adult literacy

• Increasing literacy support available to inmates of the Tasmania Prison Service

“An Adult Literacy Coalition of community and industry groups and employers will monitor the Action Plan, progress will be measured against reports will be produced annually.

“The Plan builds on the State Government’s existing investment in literacy through initiatives like Launching Into Learning, Raising the Bar and Closing the Gap, Child and Family Centres and LINCs.

“LINCs are vibrant hubs for learning opportunities where local people can take the first steps into learning and develop new skills for living and work, including literacy skills.

“Following the success of Huon LINC the Government has committed $17.7 million to establish five new LINCs in regional communities as well as in urban centres like Rosny.

“LINCS bring together services like Online Access Centres, libraries, Adult Education and other learning and information organisations in an integrated service hub.

“Too many Tasmanian adults do not have strong literacy skills. I’m not prepared to let that stand and centres like the Rosny LINC can, will and are making a difference,” Mr Bartlett said.

The Tasmanian Adult Literacy Action Plan is available at:

Further information: Vanessa Fabris on 0419 006 572
Global Literacy Progress Masks Sharp Regional Gaps
Tuesday, 7 October 2008, 12:43 pm
Press Release: United Nations

Global Progress In Literacy Masks Sharp Regional Gaps, UN Report Finds New York, Oct 6 2008 6:10PM

Global literacy rates continue to rise but some regions are still lagging sharply behind in the campaign to ensure that everyone can read and write, a United Nations report released today finds.

The report, from the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), says the world literacy rate should reach almost 87 per cent by 2015. The number of illiterate adults has also fallen by nearly 100 million in the past 15 years.

But the report – released at the halfway mark of the UN Literacy Decade (2003-2012) – notes that certain regions, particularly South and West Asia and sub-Saharan Africa, are struggling to keep up with progress elsewhere and called for new strategies to improve literacy rates in those parts of the world.
“As we begin the second half of the United Nations Literacy Decade, the international community must seek new ways to work with marginalized populations for whom traditional approaches have proved ineffective,” said UNESCO Director-General Koïchiro Matsuura.

While the period of 2000-2006 pushed the global adult literacy rate up from 76 per cent to 83.6 per cent, UNESCO said such figures mask considerable regional disparities.

For instance, 75 per cent of the 774 million illiterate adults live in only 15 countries – including Bangladesh, Brazil, China, India and Nigeria. And in some sub-Saharan African countries, the number of non-literate adults has increased in recent years by approximately 30 million.

The literacy gender gap also remains almost unchanged, with 63 per cent of illiterate adults at the end of 1994 being women compared to 64 per cent in 2006.

Under such circumstances, three quarters of the 127 countries for which projections were calculated will miss the Millennium Development Goal (MDG) of halving adult illiteracy rates by 2015.

Several initiatives have been undertaken by the UN agency to boost the promotion of literacy, including three plans to improve the management and adaptability of literacy programmes and a series of regional and sub-regional conferences in 2007 and 2008 which gave new momentum to policy focus on literacy.

The other recommendations in the report include the need to boast national government and donor organization funding, while improving the delivery of literacy programmes, notably by adapting teaching methods to diverse contexts and demands.

Meanwhile, a lunch will be held tomorrow with the participation of First Lady of the United States Laura Bush, UNESCO’s Honorary Ambassador for the UN Literacy Decade, marking the launch of a new publication entitled The Global Literacy Challenge.

In Seoul, a UNESCO conference – “Building Equitable and Sustainable Societies in Asia and Pacific: the Challenge of Adult Learning” – will be held from today until 8 October to review key issues in adult learning and propose strategies to renew policies and action.

Today in Paris also marked the signing of a memorandum of understanding for a strategic partnership between UNESCO and the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB), which aims to undertake joint activities in Latin America and the Caribbean in areas including capacity building for the achievement of Education for All (EFA).

Literacy Statistics
According to the Literacy Report released by the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES)

About one in 20 adults in the U.S. is not literate in English 11 million Americans lack the skills to handle many everyday tasks 30 million adults may not be able to make sense of a simple pamphlet Adults with ability to perform challenging and complex reading tasks made an average yearly salary of $50,700 in 2003. That is $28,000 more than those who lacked basic skills.

Literacy statistics and juvenile court
85 percent of all juveniles who interface with the juvenile court system are functionally illiterate.

More than 60 percent of all prison inmates are functionally illiterate.

Penal institution records show that inmates have a 16% chance of returning to prison if they receive literacy help, as opposed to 70% who receive no help. This equates to taxpayer costs of $25,000 per year per inmate and nearly double that amount for juvenile offenders.

Illiteracy and crime are closely related. The Department of Justice states, "The link between academic failure and delinquency, violence, and crime is welded to reading failure." Over 70% of inmates in America's prisons cannot read above a fourth grade level.

Many of the USA ills are directly related to illiteracy. Just a few statistics:
Literacy is learned. Illiteracy is passed along by parents who cannot read or write.

One child in four grows up not knowing how to read.

43% of adults at Level 1 literacy skills live in poverty compared to only 4% of those at Level 5

3 out of 4 food stamp recipients perform in the lowest 2 literacy levels

90% of welfare recipients are high school dropouts

16 to 19 year old girls at the poverty level and below, with below average skills, are 6 times more likely to have out-of-wedlock children than their reading counterparts.

Low literary costs $73 million per year in terms of direct health care costs. A recent study by Pfizer put the cost much higher.

Grim Illiteracy Statistics
U.S.A Illiterate people are missing out on 237 billion dollars total each year in money that they could be earning if they knew how to read.

- The total amount of money being spent on illiteracy by the federal government is at more than ten billion dollars each year, which grows steadily.

Source: Education Portal (September 2007)

Literacy and basic education levels of South Africans aged 15 and over Level of education 2001
Full general education (Grade 9 and more)
14. 3 million (54%) 13.1 million (50%) 15.8 million (52%)
Less than full general education (less than Grade 9)
12.2 million (46%) 13.2 million (50%) 14.6 million (48%)
Less than grade 7 7.4 million (28%) 8.5 million (32%) 9.6 million (32%)
No schooling 2.9 million (11%) 4.2 million (16%) 4.7 million (16%)

Source: Centre for Adult Education University of KwaZulu-Natal

French National Statistics Institute
The IVQ survey conducted by INSEE1 in 2004-2005
focused on the population between 18 and 65 living in metropolitan France, which amounts to roughly 40 million people. See the results.

Illiteracy: a word that we would prefer to no longer use, yet… 860 million men and women in the world are deprived of the most basic skills, and must deal with the inability to read and write. Industrialized countries with mandatory schooling are not spared.

To refer to this situation, affecting every age group, and to distinguish it from that of people who never attended school, France has chosen the term «illiteracy». A harsh word that provokes shock and indignation but that is still necessary today so that those who face it are not neglected, since they tend to hide this condition so often associated with failure. Illiteracy is a glaring problem that remains invisible.

Source: PDF from the French National Statistics Institute

Illiteracy has direct impact on human health
, says
UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon’s in message for International Literacy Day as he calls for more investment to boost reading skills

One in five adults -- some 774 million -- is illiterate, and thus lives with no access to the vast global store of written communication. Seventy-five million children are not in school and millions more young people leave school without a level of literacy adequate for productive and active participation in society. These would be devastating numbers at any time, for individuals and societies alike; that they occur in the context of today’s information society should drive home the urgency of efforts to promote literacy throughout the world.

The theme of this year’s observance of International Literacy Day, “Literacy and Health”, is meant to draw more attention to the links between the two. Illiteracy has a direct impact on human health. It prevents people from being able to read the instructions on a medicine bottle. It means that people are less likely to know facts about AIDS, malaria and other infectious diseases. And because two thirds of those who are illiterate are women and girls, who often bear the burden of caring for sick members of their families, it means that they will be less likely to know about prevention and support services, and how to use life-saving medicines and other treatments.

To increase literacy skills, well-defined policies and increased investment will be essential. Literacy is indispensable for achieving the Millennium Development Goals targeting maternal health and combating HIV and malaria, and for addressing some of the world’s most important public health challenges. On this International Literacy Day, let us all -- Governments, the United Nations family, donors and civil society -- translate this commitment into more vigorous action. Literacy for all will benefit us all.

Source: UN news

News Items
The World Today, ABC Radio
Reporter - George Roberts.
Title - Half of all Australians can't read, write properly: survey.
An international survey suggests about half of all Australians can't read properly. And 70 per cent of the population has trouble understanding numbers.

Read the transcript or listen to the full interview

ACAL - Australian Council for Adult Literacy

See their website for Literacy links, reports, e-news and other literacy related information.

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