Mission: Raising A Reader is a national program proven to build literacy through family engagement.

Raising A Reader is a 501(c)(3) organization, with an IRS ruling year of 2014, and donations are tax-deductible.

Is this your nonprofit? Access the Nonprofit Portal to submit data and download your rating toolkit.


Contact Information

  www.raisingareader.org

  489 VALLEY WAY
Milpitas CA 95035-4105


 Important note on the timeliness of ratings

The IRS is significantly delayed in processing nonprofits' annual tax filings (Forms 990). As a result, the Finance & Accountability score for Raising A Reader is outdated and the overall rating may not be representative of its current operations. Please check with the charity directly for any questions you may have.


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Encompass Rating System by Charity Navigator


Overall Score

100

out of 100

This charity's score is a passing score.
This overall score is calculated from multiple beacon scores: 80% Finance & Accountability, 10% Leadership & Adaptability, and 10% Culture & Community


Learn about the Encompass Rating System: Overview | FAQ | Release Notes

Next: Impact & Results

...   Finance & Accountability


This score provides an assessment of a nonprofit's financial health (stability, efficiency and sustainability) and its commitment to governance practices and policies.


Finance & Accountability Score

100

out of 100

The score earned by Raising A Reader is a passing score

This V6 of the Finance & Accountability Score provides a baseline measure of an organization's health including the indicators listed in the report below.

This score represents Form 990 data from 2019, the latest year electronically filed and published by the IRS.



Back to Overall

Finance & Accountability Report

100

of 100 points

This beta feature is currently viewable only on desktop or tablet screens. Check back later for updates.

Program Expense

Program Expense Ratio

72.64%

Higher effect on score

More data  


The Program Expense Ratio is determined by Program Expenses divided by Total Expense (average of most recent three 990s). This measure reflects the percent of its total expenses a charity spends on the programs and services it exists to deliver.


Program Expense Percentage

Amount of Credit Received

70% or higherFull Credit
60% - 69.9%Partial Credit
50% - 59.9%Zero Points for Program Expense Score
Below 50%Zero Points for Both Program Expense AND Liabilities to Assets Scores

Source: IRS Form 990

Board Composition

9/10 Independent

Higher effect on score


Charity Navigator looks for at least 3 board members, with more than 50% of those members identified as independent (not salaried).


The presence of an independent governing body is strongly recommended by many industry professionals to allow for full deliberation and diversity of thinking on governance and other organizational matters.


Source: IRS Form 990

Independent Audit or Financial Review

Audited

Higher effect on score


An Audit, Review, or Compilation provides important information about financial accountability and accuracy. Organizations are scored based on their Total Revenue Amount:

Total Revenue Amount

Expectation to Receive Credit

$1 million or higherExpected to complete an audit
$500,000 - $1 millionExpected to complete an audit, review, or compilation
Less than $500,000No expectation (removed from scoring methodology)

Source: IRS Form 990

Liabilities to Assets Ratio

12.67%

Lower effect on score


The Liabilities to Assets Ratio is determined by Total Liabilities divided by Total Assets (most recent 990). This ratio is an indicator of an organization’s solvency and/or long-term sustainability.

Liabilities to Assets Ratio

Amount of Credit Received

Less than 50%Full Credit
50% - 59.9%Partial Credit
60% or moreNo Credit

Source: IRS Form 990

Website

Listed

Lower effect on score


Charity Navigator looks for a website on the Form 990 as an accountability and transparency metric.


Nonprofits act in the public trust and reporting publicly on activities is an important component.


Source: IRS Form 990

Conflict of Interest Policy

Listed

Lower effect on score


Charity Navigator looks for the existence of a conflict of interest policy on the Form 990 as an accountability and transparency measure.


This policy protects the organization and by extension those it serves, when it is considering entering into a transaction that may benefit the private interest of an officer, director and/or key employee of the organization.


Source: IRS Form 990

Board Meeting Minutes

Documented

Lower effect on score


Charity Navigator looks to confirm on the Form 990 that the organization has this process in place as an accountability and transparency measure.


An official record of the events that take place during a board meeting ensures that a contemporaneous document exists for future reference.


Source: IRS Form 990

Document Retention and Destruction

Listed

Lower effect on score


Charity Navigator looks for the existence of a document retention and destruction policy per the Form 990 as an accountability and transparency measure.


This policy establishes guidelines for the handling, backing up, archiving and destruction of documents. These guidelines foster good record keeping procedures that promote data integrity.


Source: IRS Form 990

Whistleblower Policy

Listed

Lower effect on score


Charity Navigator looks for the existence of a whistleblower policy per the Form 990 as an accountability and transparency measure.


This policy outlines procedures for handling employee complaints, as well as a confidential way for employees to report financial or other types of mismanagement.


Source: IRS Form 990

Additional Information

Unscored

This beta feature is currently viewable only on desktop or tablet screens. Check back later for updates.

Total Revenue and Expenses

Total Revenue and Expenses

This chart displays the trend of revenue and expenses over the past several years for this organization, as reported on their IRS Form 990.

Salary of Key Persons

No Data Available


Key Persons data is currently unavailable for this organization. This data is only available if this charity has at least one year of electronically-filed Form 990 data filed within the last six years.

Business Master File Data

Below are some key data points from the Exempt Organization IRS Business Master File (BMF) for this organization. Learn more about the BMF on the IRS website


Activities:

Activity data not reported from the IRS


Foundation Status:

509(a)(3) Type I (BMF foundation code: 21)


Affiliation:

Independent - the organization is an independent organization or an independent auxiliary (i.e., not affiliated with a National, Regional, or Geographic grouping of organizations). (BMF affiliation code: 3)

Data Sources: IRS Forms 990

The Form 990 is a document that nonprofit organizations file with the IRS annually. We leverage finance and accountability data from it to form Encompass ratings. Click here to view this organization's Forms 990 on the IRS website (if any are available).

Pandemic Response

Due to the unprecedented nature of the pandemic, we give charities such as this one the opportunity to share the story of COVID's impact on them. Charities may submit their own pandemic responses through their nonprofit portal.


Raising A Reader reported being impacted by COVID-19 in the following ways:
  • Program Delivery

  • Fundraising Capacity

  • Revenue

  • Staffing

  • Administrative Capacity

  • Grants Received


How COVID-19 impacted the organization's operations financially:

We applied and received the PPP loan and were able to employ a full staff.


How COVID-19 impacted the organization's delivery of programs:

Due to social distancing, our Classic Red Book Bag Rotation Program was difficult for some of our Affiliates to implement as books are rotated weekly. As a result, we launched two new programs that helped families build at home libraries and establish shared reading routines, Super Summer Learning Adventures and Family Shared Reading. We also partnered with WorldReader and Guardians Collective to provide virtual shared reading opportunities. Rather than in person training across 36 states, we provided virtual trainings and launched virtual monthly Town Halls to provide ongoing support to our 285 Affiliates that manage Raising A Reader programming at nearly 3,000 implementation sites.


How this organization adapted to changing conditions caused by COVID-19:

We developed and launched two new programs that helped families build at home libraries. Unlike our Classic Red Book Bag Rotation Program that rotates books weekly and exposes children to 100 thoughtfully curated books during the school year, our newly launched Super Summer Learning Adventures and Family Shared Reading Programs included multicultural books children and families keep and provided access to thousands of virtual books. Additionally, our programs include bilingual curriculum in English and Spanish that help families engage with the material and build early literacy skills essential for kindergarten readiness and reading proficiency by 3rd grade. Of note, our Family Shared Reading Program was a 2021 Library of Congress Best Practice Honoree.


Innovations the organization intends to continue permanently after the pandemic:

Raising A Reader will continue to provide many of our trainings virtually and will continue to iterate our Classic Red Book Bag Rotation Program to be adaptable to hard to reach settings that include rural, tribal, migrant and under-resourced urban communities through our Family Shared Reading Program which helps families build at home libraries. We will continue to offer digital shared reading tools in partnership with Worldreader and Guardians Collective.


Previous: Finance & Accountability  / Next: Leadership & Adaptability

...   Impact & Results


This score estimates the actual impact a nonprofit has on the lives of those it serves, and determines whether it is making good use of donor resources to achieve that impact.


Impact & Results Score

Not Currently Scored

Raising A Reader cannot currently be evaluated by our Encompass Rating Impact & Results methodology because either (A) it is eligible, but we have not yet received data; (B) we have not yet developed an algorithm to estimate its programmatic impact; (C) its programs are not direct services; or (D) it is not heavily reliant on contributions from individual donors.

Note: The absence of a score does not indicate a positive or negative assessment, it only indicates that we have not yet evaluated the organization.

Learn more about Impact & Results.


Back to Overall

Additional Information

Unscored

This beta feature is currently viewable only on desktop or tablet screens. Check back later for updates.

Largest Programs

Largest Programs



Raising A Reader reported its largest program on its FY 2019 Form 990 as:


$2,645,152

Spent in most recent FY

100%

Percent of program expenses


Raising A Reader is an evidence-based program which helps families of children aged 0-8 to develop, practice, and maintain literacy habits shown to be critical for academic success. Each week bright r ... (More)


Previous: Impact & Results  / Next: Culture & Community

...   Leadership & Adaptability


This score provides an assessment of the organization's leadership capacity, strategic thinking and planning, and ability to innovate or respond to changes in constituent demand/need or other relevant social and economic conditions to achieve the organization's mission.


Leadership & Adaptability Score

100

out of 100

The score earned by Raising A Reader is a passing score.

Encompass Rating V4 provides an evaluation of the organization's Leadership & Adaptability through the nonprofit organization submitting a survey response directly to Charity Navigator.


Back to Overall

Leadership & Adaptability Report

100

of 100 points

Mission

The nonprofit organization presents evidence of strategic thinking through articulating the organization’s mission


Raising A Reader (RAR) is a national non-profit organization founded in 1999 focused on early child literacy and family engagement. Our mission is to engage caregivers in a routine of book sharing with their children from birth through age eight to foster healthy brain development, healthy relationships, a love of reading, and the literacy skills critical for school success. RAR was one of the nation’s earliest venture philanthropy enterprises and remains one of the few cost-effective and scalable nonprofit organizations with an earned revenue model that has sustained its operations for more than twenty years. Approximately 50% of our budget is through earned revenue and the other 50% comes from contributed revenue from individuals and institutions. RAR optimizes a train-the-trainer Affiliate model to maximize our impact. We equip local community-based organizations with tools, training, actionable steps and ongoing support to empower families and improve kids’ reading skills.


Source: Nonprofit submitted responses

Vision

The nonprofit organization presents evidence of strategic thinking through articulating the organization’s vision.


Thanks to the success of our Classic Red Book Bag Rotation model and the launch of new programs, Super Summer Learning Adventures and Family Shared Reading, our goal is to grow from serving 150,000 to 200,000 children by 2022. As a social enterprise, we are positioned to expand through increased sales among new and existing partners who may have access to new Federal and State funding. In addition, our new program models that are more easily implemented in hard to reach settings can help us target vulnerable and under-resourced communities through funding from foundations and individuals. These new markets include housing developments, pediatric clinics, migrant, tribal and rural communities. Our evidence-based programming is easy to implement and easy to scale while preparing children for kindergarten and reinforcing home shared reading routines that help children become readers and reach grade level by 3rd grade.


Source: Nonprofit submitted responses

Strategic Goals

The nonprofit organization presents evidence of strategic thinking and goal setting through sharing their most important strategic goals.


Goal One: Launch Raising A Reader's new pilot program enlisting pediatricians in reinforcing literacy routines through well-child visits by September 2022.

Goal Type: New program(s) based on observed changes in needs among our constituencies/communities served.


Goal Two: In 2019, Raising A Reader approved a three-year 2020-22 strategic plan that included a 15% growth goal to serve 200,000 children, families and caregivers by 2022. In 2021, we reaching 150,000.

Goal Type: Grow, expand, scale or increase access to the existing programs and services.


Goal Three: Implement our Race Equity Agenda to address the impact of racial injustice and inequities on the children and families we serve by ensuring and implementing best practices and policies.

Goal Type: This goal reflects our commitment to further our advocacy work for our organization and or cause area.


Source: Nonprofit submitted responses

Leadership Development

The nonprofit provides evidence of investment in leadership development


Describe an investment in leadership

Raising A Reader is committed to recruiting, hiring and supporting a diverse staff that includes supporting a leadership team of six that is 50% people of color. We host biannual in-person leadership retreats that include all six members of our national team in addition to supporting staff at all levels in attending and presenting at national conferences.

Source: Nonprofit submitted responses

Mobilizing for Mission

The nonprofit provides evidence of leadership through focusing externally and mobilizing resources for the mission.


This organization mobilizes for mission in the following ways:
  • Strategic Partnerships

  • Networks of Collective Impact Efforts

  • Thought Leadership

  • Raising Awareness

  • Community Building

What are this organization’s external mobilizaton efforts?

Raising A Reader supports 285 Affiliates who administer our programming at nearly 3,000 implementation sites across 36 states, providing books, curriculum, training and ongoing support. We also collaborate with national partners like the Campaign for Grade Level Reading (CGLR), a collaboration of foundations, nonprofits, states, and communities focused on the No.1 predictor of school success: third grade reading. RAR President and CEO, Michelle Torgerson, was a featured panelist at an invite only CGLR launch session, “Assume Collaboration: A Consultative Conversation on Aggregating for Impact.” Torgerson is also partnering with leaders in the field to promote “Radical Collaboration” in the quest for early literacy for all. Guests have included President and CEO of Council for a Strong America, Brian Ford, Superbowl Champion and Literacy Advocate, Malcom Mitchell, and President and CEO of Strive Together, Jennifer Blatz who recently joined the Raising A Reader board of directors.

Source: Nonprofit submitted responses

Story of Adaptability

The nonprofit has an opportunity to tell the story of how the organization adapted to tremendous external changes in the last year.


Raising A Reader's programming was greatly impacted by the pandemic which included school closures. Our Classic Red Book Bag rotation model includes weekly rotation of books throughout the school year and our trainings were mostly in-person prior to the pandemic. We adapted by providing training and ongoing support to our Affiliates virtually and launching two new programs suited to social distancing. These models, Super Summer Learning Adventures and Family Shared Reading Program, were based on our Classic Red Book Bag Rotation model but instead of rotating books weekly, these new models helped families build at home libraries. Children were allowed to keep the books, materials and bilingual curriculum which included weekly activities in English and Spanish. We plan to continue providing all three program models and virtual training opportunities.

Source: Nonprofit submitted responses

Previous: Leadership & Adaptability

...   Culture & Community


This score provides an assessment of the organization's culture and connectedness to the community it serves. Learn more about how and why we rate Culture & Community.


Culture & Community Score

100

out of 100

Raising A Reader has earned a passing score. The organization provided data about how it listens to constituents (Constituent Feedback) and its Diversity, Equity, & Inclusion (DEI) practices (see report below).

The Culture & Community Beacon is comprised of the following metrics:

  • Constituent Feedback: 100/100 (30% of beacon score)

  • Diversity, Equity, & Inclusion: 100/100 (70% of beacon score)


Back to Overall

Culture & Community Report

100

of 100 points

This beta feature is currently viewable only on desktop or tablet screens. Check back later for updates.

Constituent Feedback

Diversity, Equity, & Inclusion

100/100 points

70% of beacon score


This organization's score of 100 is a passing score. The organization reported that it is implementing 11 diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) practices. Charity Navigator believes nonprofit organizations implementing effective DEI policies and practices can enhance a nonprofit's decision-making, staff motivation, innovation, and effectiveness.


View this organization's DEI Strategies


Methodology


We are utilizing data collected by Candid to document and assess the DEI practices implemented by the organization. Nonprofit organizations are encouraged to fill out the Equity Strategies section of their Candid profiles to receive a rating.


Learn more about the methodology.

Constituent Feedback

100/100 points

30% of beacon score


This organization reported that it is collecting feedback from the constituents and/or communities it serves. Charity Navigator believes nonprofit organizations that engage in inclusive practices, such as collecting feedback from the people and communities they serve, may be more effective.


View this organization's Constituent Feedback Practices




Methodology


We've partnered with Candid to survey organizations about their feedback practices. Nonprofit organizations can fill out the How We Listen section of their Candid profile to receive a rating.


Learn more about the methodology.

Analysis and Research


Like the overall Encompass Rating System, the Culture & Community Beacon is designed to evolve as metrics are developed and ready for integration. Below you can find more information about the metrics we currently evaluate in this beacon and their relevance to nonprofit performance.


Constituent Feedback


Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion

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