Cause, Effect, Solution: a Series

Jumping on the bandwagon of Gen-Z activism here, but I do have an important issue to share.

I’d like to step away for a moment from the happy-go-lucky casual tone of my blog posts and bring a truly global problem to your attention. No, no: I won’t be talking about the Earth’s climate here, my apologies for dashing your expectations. Instead, I want to focus on a less polarising cause: namely, world literacy and the lack thereof.

I have already written about the wider statistical data and extent of this issue, but I would like to expand on the causes and consequences of global illiteracy through a series of awareness updates. Throughout, I will be referencing info from the Room to Read non-profit I have chosen to support.

The problem, in plain words:

  • As of this moment, over 100 million children worldwide are illiterate, and so are an estimated 750 million youths and adults.

First and foremost, we must be clear on the reasons behind this global problem.

  • It all begins during a child’s formative years. In less economically developed countries, educational systems are often unable to provide children with age-appropriate books in their native tongue. According to Room to Read: ‘books for early readers are often limited or nonexistent in the countries where we work’.
  • Classrooms and schools in the world’s poorest regions are overcrowded and ill-suited for safe education of young children. Teachers lack the methodologies to adjust their teaching for beginner readers.
  • Once a child has acquired basic reading and comprehension skills, their further development cannot be supported due to a lack of libraries and trained librarians – a problem interconnected with a similar scarcity of schools and teachers.

The causes of illiteracy are numerous and complex, and this multigeneration humanitarian crisis demands a range of solutions targeted at each aspect of the issue.

I’d like to expand on a number of answers to the problem in future posts. For now, I’d like to welcome all of you to supporting this cause and contributing to Room to Read’s efforts, either via donation to my fundraiser portal or by sharing this and spreading awareness. Every little helps!

Next up, I’d like to focus on the implications of this problem, and finally give a detailed overview of steps undertaken by educational non-profits to combat illiteracy. Stay tuned!

Thanks for coming to Part One of my blogger TED talk.