Reach Out & Read Inland Empire is an organization giving young children in San Bernardino and Riverside counties a foundation for success by incorporating books into pediatric care and encouraging families to read aloud together. 

A program of the American Academy of Pediatrics California Chapter 2, the research-proven, school readiness program is based in physician offices throughout the Inland Empire. Reach Out and Read has been a funded partner of F5SB since 2019 with doctors, nurse practitioners and physician assistants providing guidance to parents on the importance of reading aloud to their young children and giving an age-appropriate book to take home at every well-child visit.

According to Reach out & Read Program Coordinator Delesa Barnes, during well-child visits for children ages 6 months through 5 years, the provider starts the visit by giving the child a new, developmentally appropriate book to take home, which over time builds a child’s book collection to 8-10 new books before kindergarten.

Reach Out and Read sites also create literacy-rich environments that may include gently used books for waiting room use or for siblings to take home.  

In fiscal year 2022, 158 providers participated and distributed 32,339 books to their patients, further supporting First 5 San Bernardino’s strategic priority initiatives of health and quality learning.