Literacy is a Human Right

Eleanor DollearMission & Outcomes, Programs, Teachers, Volunteers

Literacy is a Human Right

UNESCO asserts, “Literacy is a fundamental human right and the foundation for lifelong learning. It is fully essential to social and human development in its ability to transform lives. For individual, families, and societies alike, it is an instrument of empowerment to improve one’s health, ones’ income, and one’s relationship with the world.”

WITS Understands

Literacy is a Human RightWITS understands this and creates opportunities for every student in Chicago to be literate and grow into a passionate reader.

Being able to read and write allows for meaningful participation in the world. At its base, being able to read means knowing what ingredients are in food, understanding what bus line goes to work, taking the correct prescription drug. Furthermore, reading provides insight into other cultures and lifestyles and helps students understand complex topics.

Plan of Action

The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development is a plan of action from the United Nations to strengthen universal peace and eradicate poverty by the year 2030. Universal literacy is a part of this plan, “ensur[ing] that all youth and a substantial proportion of adults, both men and women, achieve literacy and numeracy.”

The Third Grade

According to a report published by The Annie E. Casey Foundation, there are proven advantages to being proficient in reading by the third grade. Students who are reading at grade level in the third grade are more likely to graduate high school, less likely to be incarcerated, more likely to find high-paying jobs, and more likely to have a longer lifespan. It is because of these statistics that the WITS Mid-Day Mentoring program primarily serves third grade students.

Beyond taking students to new places, being able to read is vital. Join our movement and help create opportunities for every student in Chicago to be literate.


0 volunteers

from 67 corporate, university, and community partners.

Wits provides

0 hours

of professional development in literacy best practices to Rochelle Lee Teacher Awardees.


0 books

to the homes of students and classrooms of Rochelle Lee Teacher Awardees each year.

wits contributes a

$0 million

annual investment in Chicago Public Schools students and teachers.