3204 Indigo Waters Dr., Austin TX 78732 info@rawli.org 512.804.9339

Reading Around the World

Carissa Mallory Honored by RecognizeGood

Carissa Mallory was honored by RecognizeGood, an organization dedicated to searching out and illuminating good in the Austin community.  In a ceremony at the children’s department of Barnes and Noble at the Hill Country Galleria in Bee Caves, State Representative Tony Dale and Leander ISD school board President Pam Waggonner helped RecognizeGood’s George Mihalcik present Carissa with pay-it-forward grant of $1,000, which she chose to donate to RAWLI to continue supporting children’s education in Tanzania.

“At LISD we graduate a lot of great kids and they on to do remarkable and wonderful things.  But there are very few that can actually be recognized for helping another nation.  It’s so much bigger than one person.”  – Pam Waggoner, Leander ISD School Board President

State Representative Tony Dale reminded Carissa that the Library of Congress was started by one man’s book donation, similar to the book donation she made that originally launched Reading Around the World.

In addition to the the $1,000 pay-it-forward donation, Carissa will also have an opportunity to be part of RecognizeGood’s Say Thanks Austin campaign, a month-long celebration of goodness in which the Class of 2017 Legends compete for a $10,000 prize to be donated to their charity of choice.

The donation will be used to continue RAWLI’s efforts to introduce a Digital Age Learning Environment (DALE) to Tanzanian schools, helping to bridge the digital divide and enable Tanzania to compete in a digitally-literate global economy.

Pictured (L-R): State Representative Tony Dale, Leander ISD School Board President Pam Waggoner, Carissa Mallory and RAWLI Board member Theo Shayo.


Teacher Technology Training

Twenty teachers from Gerezani Primary School attended professional development classes in technology to enhance the role of informational technology in student learning and achievement.  Funded by a grant from Reading Around the World Literacy Initiative (RAWLI), the technology training will provide support to increase proficiency in technology for teachers as Gerezani Primary School integrates a Digital Age Learning Environment into classrooms.  Read More

Gift Wrapping at Barnes & Noble


‘Tis the season….and RAWLI volunteers are here to make your holidays a little easier.  We will be wrapping gifts for you!  Dates and times below:

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ESL App Helps Swahili Speakers Learn English

Reading Around the World Literacy Initiative (RAWLI) is pleased to announce the launch of  Swahili to English Bubble Bath, an educational game to assist Swahili speaking children in learning English.

The app, a collaboration with Overpass Ltd. of the U.K., was developed by game designer, Eric Wroolie.  The app is available in both Apple and Android versions and available free of charge at both the iTunes store and on Google Play.

“We are excited to launch this educational app to a worldwide marketplace,” said Carissa Mallory, Founder of RAWLI. “This will help teach English language to the Swahili speaker in the digital age.”

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RAWLI’s Founder Receives Spirit of Community Award



Carissa Mallory, founder of Reading Around the World Literacy Initiative, has been named Vandegrift High School’s Top Youth Volunteer of the Year.  This honor was granted as part of the Prudential Spirit of Community Awards, a nationwide youth volunteer recognition program sponsored by Prudential Financial in partnership with the National Association of Secondary School Principals.

By selecting Carissa as its top youth volunteer, Vandegrift has advanced her application for state-level judging in the 2017 Prudential Spirit of Community Awards program. Prudential will announceTexas’s top youth volunteers of the year on February 7, 2017.

As a Local Honoree, Carissa is now in the running to be named one of two Prudential Spirit of Community State Honorees for Texas.

“Young people who contribute their time and talents to their communities are role models for all of us,” said Prudential Chairman and CEO John Strangfeld. “We salute their dedication, their achievements, and their spirit of community.”

“Demonstrating civic responsibility through community volunteerism is an important part of life,” said NASSP Executive Director JoAnn Bartoletti. “These Honorees practice a lesson we hope all young people, as well as adults, will emulate.”

The Prudential Spirit of Community Awards represents America’s largest youth recognition program based exclusively on volunteer service. Since 1995, the program has honored more than 115,000 youth volunteers at the local, state and national level. Learn more at http://spirit.prudential.com or www.nassp.org/spirit.

Our first app is coming soon!

RAWLI is super excited to be working with Overpass Ltd. UK to develop an app to help Swahili speaking primary school students learn English.   Our app is being developed by Eric Wroolie and will be based on his popular “bubble bath” series which helps English speaking students learn foreign languages.  Now we wonder…will the students in Tanzania learn to speak English with a British accent?  <insert ahhhh here> Read More

Llama, Llama Author’s Legacy and Final Request


We are saddellama llamaned to hear that last Saturday, September 3rd, a beloved children’s author passed away.  Anna Dewdney, author of the Llama, Llama series of read-aloud children’s picture books lost her 15-month battle with brain cancer.    

We had the fun of spending some time in the U.K. this summer and thought of Anna as we stopped to visit a Llama Park, happy that our container headed to Tanzania had some of her stories that would soon delight children in Africa.

The Washington Post reports that although Anna had a dream of writing children’s books, she worked a variety of odd jobs to support herself while waiting for publishers to finally agree to publish her stories.  She was 40 by the time she finally got her breakthrough!  Her life reminds us to dare to dream, and to keep pursuing your dreams even if you don’t succeed the first time.  Her books finally got published and became wildly successful, selling millions of copies!

Publisher’s Weekly reports that instead of a funeral service, she asked people read to a child.  What a wonderful legacy Anna leaves for future generations!

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GPS Tech Lab Expansion Brings Smiles


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In Tanzania, as with most of Africa, technology is still vastly underutilized.   In contrast to developed nations which have harnessed the power of technology to improve the quality of life, Africa lags behind in adopting technology and the inefficiencies contribute to a cycle of poverty.   With only about 9 percent of homes having access to computers, Tanzania is one of the least technologically literate countries in the world.  Bridging the Digital Divide to help Tanzania become technologically literate will significantly improve the quality of life and help end the cycle of poverty.

With the expansion of our tech lab at GPS this summer, we had the joy of bringing lots of new technology to the school!  Little by little we’re getting closer to our goal of having a 1:1 technology center where every student is able to have their very own device!   This will allow GPS to become a model school for the community for integrating technology into the classroom.  For now, the students enjoy working together to share access to the laptops and tablets which have some fun apps to help them learn. Read More

Archive – Aug 2016

RAWLI is excited to sponsor the 9th Annual Steiner Ranch Concert in the Park Summer 2016  in celebration of the families and community friends who make Steiner Ranch an excellent neighborhood to live and work.  This event will be a great opportunity to connect with friends and neighbors and have a ton of fun, and we’ll also be raising money to help kids in need of school supplies, both here at home and in Africa!



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March and April 2016 Events

March 2016

Rachel Frith and Sara Campbell, members of RAWLI’s Youth Advisory Council presented “Connecting Leaders and Readers in Africa” at the National Service Learning Conference held from March 30th to April 2nd at the Hyatt Regency hotel in St. Paul, MN.


April 2016

Sara Carpenter and Carissa Mallory, members of RAWL’s Youth Advisory Council spoke to a joint meeting of Rice University Business School and Harvard Business School alumni associations.  They organized youth activities for the children at this family picnic, painting letters for signs to be installed at libraries in Tanzania.