Kappa Psi promotes childhood literacy through ‘Reach Out and Read’
By Joseph Paul Javier
Kappa Psi Pharmaceutical Fraternity, the oldest and largest pharmaceutical fraternity in the United States, continues its philanthropic partnership with Reach Out and Read. Over the past year, the members of Kappa Psi have helped Reach Out and Read’s medical providers prescribe reading aloud to children and families all around the country. Reach Out and Read is a nonprofit organization that gives young children a foundation for success by incorporating books into pediatric care and encouraging families to read aloud together.
Wayne State’s Mu Omicron Pi chapter of Kappa Psi is continuing this commitment of promoting childhood literacy with brothers recording themselves reading children's books. Brothers from the entire collegiate chapter as well as some alumni chose classics stories as well books explaining how germs like the flu and COVID-19 are spread, recorded themselves reading aloud and then uploaded them to YouTube for Reach Out and Read kids to access online.
"Reach Out and Read is a wonderful organization to partner with during the pandemic. The experience of being read to is an irreplaceable part of childhood development, and we hope that these videos can promote literacy and creativity for children who are isolated or hospitalized.” Kappa Psi chaplain, Lucas Crum, adds. “The digital performance aspect of these videos may also inspire children to make their own media projects. Taking on this project during the pandemic is an affirmation of our Mu Omicron Pi chapter of Kappa Psi’s commitment to meaningful charitable work which utilizes our strengths for the benefit of others."
Other Kappa Psi chapters have also recorded reading aloud videos and donated books and monetary donations for Reach Out and Read. This marks the 30th year of Kappa Psi’s partnership with Reach Out and Read with pharmacy students filling prescriptions for reading aloud and drawing awareness to the importance of childhood literacy.
"As a professional student organization, we know how important it is to educate today's youth early to promote future growth. Reach Out and Read is a wonderful philanthropy we have been partnered with that promotes daily reading for the positive educational benefit of young children,” says Steven Conway, Kappa Psi scholarship chairman. “Our chapter saw a great opportunity to contribute to the partnership through the virtual reading sessions this past fall."
Wayne State’s Kappa Psi brothers also plan to continue their childhood literacy efforts here in the Detroit area through other philanthropy efforts.
“We are currently making educational kits for elementary students filled with books, educational games, and school supplies,” says Joseph Paul Javier, the fraternity’s philanthropy chairman. “My brothers and I want to show children that reading and learning is fun. These educational kits will be distributed by the United Way of Southeast Michigan.”