Congratulations are in order.
On Monday, the National Book Foundation announced the winner and honorable mentions of the 2016 Innovations in Reading Prize.
Founded in 2009, the Innovations in Reading Prize is an annual award that honors social advocates who are making an impact on the world though literature. Past winners have included Reach Incorporated, a reading mentorship program designed to increase literacy in kids and teens, and Chicago Books to Women in Prison, which provides free books to women's prisons.
And now the results for 2016 are in.
This year, the winner of the Innovations in Reading Prize is Next Chapter Book Club, a community-based reading program for adolescents and adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities.
"The Next Chapter Book Club truly fits our understanding of literary activism and what that kind of movement can do," says Lisa Lucas, Executive Director of the National Book Foundation. "They're not just using a book club as a way to build literacy skills, but they're establishing and strengthening relationships in the real world through a shared love of books.
Along with prestige, the award also comes with a $10,000 prize, sponsored by the Levenger Foundation. For Next Chapter Book Club, that means the opportunity to reach more readers in new places.
“We have people from organizations as far away as Australia and England telling us they want to be trained to start a Next Chapter Book Club," says Susan M Berg, Executive Director of Next Chapter Book Club. "Thanks to the Innovations in Reading Prize, those big oceans and timezones separating us from them will no longer prevent any community on earth from starting a club.”
In addition to awarding Next Chapter Book Club, the National Book Foundation also named several organizations as honorable mentions — including The Harry Potter Alliance, LGBT Books to Prisoners, Limitless Libraries, and Traveling Stories.
"The Innovations in Reading Prize is our way of identifying literary activists who share this vision of what reading can do, who are working alongside us in communities across the country, and who are helping people access literature and all the life-changing benefits it brings," says Lisa Lucas, Executive Director of the National Book Foundation. "This prize helps us to help those who are building readers across the country."
You can learn more about Next Chapter Book Club and the honorable mentions below.
Winner: Next Chapter Book Club