Submitted by: American Prison Data Systems, PBC
Posted: Jul 06, 2016 – 10:00 AM EST
NEW YORK, Jul. 06 /CSRwire/ - A donation of 50 tablets this Friday will unlock reading and collaborative writing for two DYCD funded middle school summer storytelling and reading programs, in Crown Heights and Jamaica, Queens.
American Prison Data Systems (APDS), the leading face in truly rehabilitative educational tablets and programming in correctional spaces, and First Book, a nonprofit social enterprise that provides affordable new books and educational resources to educators serving children from low-income families, have teamed up to donate 50 tablets to 2 community based organizations (CBO) funded by the New York City Department of Youth and Community Development (DYCD) in time for the first day of their Cultivating Curiosity Summer 2016 programming.
APDS-donated tablets will allow 50 young people to take part in Storytellers, a DYCD program that introduces them to published and emerging NYC authors who share their love for reading and discuss how they create their stories with students. As part of the BookUp NYC + BoomWriter collaboration, students will create a unique chapter book together. The tablets will also allow the students to access thousands of e-books through Open e-Books, a partnership between First Book, Digital Public Library of America, and the New York Public Library, which is a part of the White House’s ConnectED initiative.
The Open e-Books app contains thousands of popular and award-winning titles donated from publishers and made available for free for children from in-need households.
“American Prison Data Systems is dedicated to changing the correctional system for good, and we’re thrilled that we could team up with First Book to find such a deserving program in our home city of New York to donate our surplus tablets,” said APDS CEO and founder Chris Grewe. “We passionately believe that education and fostering a love of reading is critical to the well-being of our communities, and ultimately to reducing our students’ chances of becoming involved in the criminal justice system.”
“So many of the classrooms and programs we work with are eager to integrate tablets and digital offerings, to provide the children they serve with access to e-books and other online learning materials that are so readily available to children of means,” said First Book Senior Vice President Carey Palmquist. “We are thrilled to partner with APDS to support the quality programming offered through the New York City Department of Youth and Community Development and further educational equality for children in need.”
“APDS and First Book’s commitment to providing DYCD Storytellers project participants with free tablets and access to thousands of e-books will boost our young people’s imagination and love for reading,” said NYC Department of Youth and Community Development Commissioner Bill Chong. “Incorporating this technology into the curriculum is a great way to spark middle schoolers’ creativity and encourage reading—for both learning and enjoyment—throughout the summer, during the school year, and into their adult lives.”
The tablet program donation marks the beginning of a larger partnership between APDS and First Book, through which inmate populations will also have access to First Book e-books - opening the door to moments where juvenile inmates have access to these same materials, and adult inmates parenting from behind bars have access to the same books their young children are reading, allowing them to share a love of reading.
The first implementation drop of tablets will take place on Friday, July 8 at the DYCD funded Community Counseling & Mediation’s site located at P.S. 316 Elijah Stroud Middle School. Twenty-five tablets will also be donated in Jamaica, Queens that day as well to another CBO funded by the DYCD. Tablets will be in place and online for the first day of the Storytellers program, July 11.
American Prison Data Systems (APDS) is a NYC-based Public Benefits Corporation and Certified B Corp, with the mission of making correctional facilities cheaper, safer, and far more effective at reducing recidivism. APDS offers a full-stack, custom mobile tablet solution to bring secure, best-in-class online education, job training, mental health, virtual classroom, library, communications and other rehabilitative resources to incarcerated individuals. APDS has been safely deployed in prisons, jails, probation, and alternative-to-incarceration programs around the country since mid-2014, and has served over three million hours of programming to tablet users. Learn more about APDS at APDSCorporate.com.
About First Book
First Book is a nonprofit social enterprise that provides new books, learning materials and essentials to children in need. First Book has distributed 150 million books and educational resources to programs and schools serving children from low-income families throughout the United States and Canada. First Book’s membership of more than 275,000 teachers and program leaders is the largest and fastest growing network of educators serving children from low-income families in a wide range of settings – from classrooms, libraries, after-school programs and homeless shelters, to medical clinics, museums, summer food programs and more. By making new, high quality books and essentials available to them on an ongoing basis, First Book is transforming lives, so that every child can have equal access to a quality education. Eligible educators, librarians, program leaders and others serving children in need can sign up at firstbook.org/register. For more information, please visit firstbook.org or follow the latest news on Facebook and Twitter.
DYCD supports New York City’s afterschool and youth workforce development programs throughout the five boroughs. The agency also oversees funding for anti-poverty programs, such as adult literacy and immigrant services. For more information, visit www.nyc.gov/dycd or follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.
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