Increasing youth literacy to ultimately close the achievement gap.
As the son of a single mother, Omar is no stranger to hard work. Fueled by his love of literature, Omar took it upon himself to approach a bookstore in Denver called Book Bar and asked to volunteer. After assisting with the creation of their youth advisory board and leading meetings, Omar began working with youth to create a community of young readers. He made such an impact that Book Bar hired him as a part-time employee. He has since started a Young Adult Book Club at the store for 8-15 year olds, saying “It’s amazing, seeing kids with a love for reading find a place they can be themselves…these small kids getting excited and having a good time, making new friends and forming a community.”
An internship with City Year, a non-profit that places teaching assistants in schools with high dropout rates, opened Omar’s eyes to the large achievement gap not being fully addressed by the public school system. Omar plans to become a literary agent and combine his professional expertise with his passion for education, opening a nonprofit similar to City Year that provides disenfranchised youth a solid foundation of literacy.
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