5.22.2011

Reading Rainbow! 2-Cent spreading literacy in the streets of New Orleans


According to their website, "2-Cent is a collaborative effort of creative, frustrated, and comedic twenty-somethings. They all posses the innate ability to convey humor and urgency toward issues that plague not only New Orleans, but America in general. 2-Cent is a PBS documentary, an SNL skit and an In Living Color spoof all rolled into one."

This is definitely one group I have admired for the past several years and highlighted on my blog before. On May 21, 2-Cent continued their great community work in New Orleans by hosting Listen! Literacy & Arts Festival. "It's this generation's opportunity to use their talents in literary arts, music, visual arts, and film to inspire change. We feel an urgent need to focus on the violence and the education crisis. This is an opportunity for the youth to come together in a collective voice," the group says. They gave away thousands of books as well!! Yes, books!!!

Statistics posted on their website definitely shows a dire needs for a new educational paradigm shift and more strategic ways to educate students. Only one-third of all students entering high school are proficient in reading – only about 15 percent of African American students, and 17 percent of Hispanic students. Every school day in America, 3,000 students drop out—the majority of them are poor readers. Students with below grade level reading skills are twice as likely to drop out of school as those who can read on or above grade level. Forecasters have predicted that if static literacy levels continue, then by 2030 the entire Literacy Level distribution of the U.S. population will have decreased, creating an American workforce that is unequipped and unskilled to work in the demanding global market. [Read More Statistics]


I love the way 2-Cent uses creative ways to reach the young people. This is the kind of work that needs to be done. Check out these videos, directed by Brandan Odums aka BMike, used to promote the event and a positive message. BMike is also a 2011 Do Something Awards Finalist. Support their cause by visiting the official website @ http://2-cent.com