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Library to Hold Symposium on Health and Literacy

Washington, D.C.  The Library of Congress Literacy Awards program is focused on literacy in all its forms and how literacy affects personal well-being. The Library will hold a symposium, “Literacy and Health: New Perspectives,” in cooperation with Nemours Children’s Health Network on Thursday, March 17, from 9:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Reading proficiency is one of the strongest predictors of overall health through adulthood, according to Dr. David J. Bailey, president and CEO of Nemours Children’s Health System, in a recent article.

The symposium will take place in the Montpelier Room, located on the sixth floor of the James Madison Memorial Building, 101 Independence Ave. S.E., Washington, D.C. It is free and open to the public; no tickets are required.

“Literacy and Health” will bring together experts in the field, including physicians, policymaking officials, children’s authors and businesspeople, to look at the current situation and steps that are currently being taken, as well as those that need to be taken.

Following is the schedule of events:

9:30-10:15 a.m.
Keynote Address: Dr. Sandra Hassink, immediate past president, American Academy of Pediatrics
10:30-11:30 a.m. Panel 1: Child and Adolescent Health and Literacy Issues
11:30 a.m.-noon Authors’ Perspective: Robie Harris, author of children’s books about health and family issues

1:10-1:30 p.m.
Literacy and the Ebola Crisis
1:30-2:30 p.m. Panel 2: Adult Literacy and Health Issues
2:30-3:30 p.m. Panel 3: Business Perspectives
3:30-4:30 p.m. Panel 4: Technology and Other Innovative Solutions
4:30-5 p.m. Closing Remarks: John Y. Cole, director of the Center for the Book in the Library of Congress

The Library of Congress Literacy Awards, first announced in January 2013, help support organizations working to promote literacy in the United States and worldwide. The awards, administered by the Center for the Book in the Library of Congress, highlight and reward organizations that do exemplary, innovative and easily replicable work. In conjunction with the awards presentation and its annual best practices publication and related programming, the Library of Congress encourages new groups, organizations and individuals to become involved.

Founded in 1800, the Library of Congress is the largest library in the world. The Library seeks to spark imagination and creativity and to further human understanding and wisdom by providing access to knowledge through its magnificent collections, programs, publications and exhibitions.

The Library’s Center for the Book, established by Congress in 1977 to “stimulate public interest in books and reading,” is a national force for reading and literacy promotion. A public-private partnership, it sponsors educational programs that reach readers of all ages through its affiliated state centers, collaborations with nonprofit reading-promotion partners and through the Young Readers Center and the Poetry and Literature Center at the Library of Congress. For more information, visit Read.gov.

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