The initiative helps Phoenix children and families build home libraries.

Southwest Human Development Grow a Reader

Southwest Human Development Grow a Reader

PHOENIXApril 10, 2023PRLog — Local businesses are partnering with Southwest Human Development, Arizona’s largest nonprofit for early childhood development, to “feed the need to read” throughout the month of May by participating in the nonprofit’s Grow A Reader virtual book drive.

For families who struggle to make ends meet, purchasing new, high-quality children’s books simply does not compete with priorities like providing food, clothing and shelter. In low-income communities, three out of every five children don’t have a single children’s book to call their own.

“Children without access to early literacy materials often face challenges as they enter school,” says Jake Adams, chief development officer for Southwest Human Development. “Our partners’ support of our early literacy efforts through this annual drive better prepares thousands of children for success when they enter kindergarten.”

Donating to the Grow A Reader virtual book drive is simple. People can visit a participating Grow A Reader business location, “pick a flower” and purchase books online at to help get children’s books into the hands of kids who need them most. Books start at only $3.99 and are also eligible for a dollar-for-dollar Arizona Charitable Tax Credit of up to $800.

This year’s participating Grow A Reader partners include Arizona Central Credit Union, Century 21 Arizona Foothills, Charro Hipster, CVL Consultants, El Chullo, GM, Lane Terralever, Short Leash Hotdogs and The Joint Chiropractic.

Two of the restaurant partners will host special events in support of Grow A Reader. On Wednesday, May 3, El Chullo will host a happy hour with musical performers at their new location at 4414 N. Seventh Avenue in Phoenix. On Friday, May 19, Short Leash Hotdogs located at 4221 N. Seventh Avenue will host a live music happy hour. Both events are free to attend and open to the public.

Donated books from the Grow A Reader campaign are distributed to families in need who participate in Southwest Human Development’s early literacy programs like Raising A Reader. This program focuses on strengthening family literacy routines and community literacy connections. Additionally, donated books support Reach Out and Read, a national, evidence-based program that promotes early literacy in pediatric offices.

To learn more about becoming a Grow A Reader partner or to donate books, please visit (

About Southwest Human Development

Southwest Human Development is Arizona’s largest nonprofit dedicated to early childhood development. Recognizing a child’s earliest experiences and relationships establish the foundation for all future development, Southwest Human Development’s more than 40 comprehensive programs focus on young children—ages birth to 5—and their families in the areas of child development, mental health, Easterseals disabilities services, Head Start, early literacy, family support and child welfare, and professional development and training. Founded in 1981, Southwest Human Development serves 140,000 children and families each year. Learn more at (