Project Lead: John Mennell

Reading is Fundamental says two-thirds of families in poverty have zero books. We can fix that today. Make this mountain of 150,000+ mags disappear into hands, homes, and hearts for literacy that changes lives for good. Literacy ends poverty of the mind, heart, and pocket. Literacy changes lives for good. Children unable to read are lost – adults unable to read where children who didn’t learn how. With 7000+ titles in the US alone, for every age, interest, aspiration, and language, magazines are the most powerful literacy engines on earth.


At, we’ve just opened the Ohio Literacy Bank – the first of its kind in the world – like a foodbank, but rescuing magazines recycled by consumers, publishers, and newsstands for delivery to at-risk readers via literacy programs – food pantries, homeless, domestic abuse, and trafficking shelters, youth mentoring, and job training programs, and more.

Over a billion magazines are printed each year – they hold enormous literacy value, but most are discarded, including millions of unsold copies that are destroyed or landfilled. Our moonshot is to rescue as many as possible for literacy deliveries to at-risk readers. recently received 150,000+ magazines – a mountain of magazines ready for delivery throughout the Columbus area and to surrounding locations, from Appalachia to Detroit, and beyond. We need help to make this mountain of magazines disappear into the hands and homes of at-risk readers via literacy programs.


  1. Set up an online literacy market that literacy programs can use to order magazines for delivery (WordPress WooCommerce)
  2. Deploy a massive outreach campaign across all media and networking channels to invite literacy programs to review our inventory and place orders 
  3. Mobilize a fleet of drivers to pick-up and deliver magazines to programs

We need help standing up best practice digital marketing, and engaging all media channels of the entire magazine publishing industry to engage stakeholders to fund logistics.

We also want to set up and promote across all channels a massive open literacy market at the Ohio Literacy Bank for programs to choose their own magazines on Saturdays Sept. 11 and Oct. 9. Our success in Columbus can be replicated to meet literacy needs in every community in every corner of the world. This is our moonshot.


Find more info in our blog, and Instagram and Facebook pages @magazineliteracy