Festival of Tales brings books to life through ‘Art of Storytelling’

Approximately 800,000 children under age 9 in Arizona live in poverty. Many of them have difficulty speaking and nearly half of them have trouble understanding English. About 61 percent of these children don’t even have a single book in their home.

Southwest Human Development partnered with Paradise Valley Community (PVCC) in a effort improve early literacy for young children on Saturday for the Festival of Tales. The biannual festival brings books to life through the “Art of Storytelling” and provides free books to children who participate in the day’s activities, which includes demonstrations of storytelling, arts and crafts, games, face painting, live music, food trucks and much more!

Since its inception, Festival of Tales has attracted more than 15,500 people from Maricopa County and more than 25,000 books have been given away to children from low-income families. Southwest Human Development’s partnership with PVCC provides 8,000 books to Valley children each year.

“Books are the cornerstone of learning and language development and it’s crucial for the Valley as a community to ensure that there are books in every home,” said Ginger Ward, CEO of Southwest Human Development. “At Southwest Human Development, we’re committed to providing high-quality programs designed to improve the learning, behavior and health of young children, which in turn helps them enter school ready to learn. Festival of Tales provides a great opportunity for the community to access age-appropriate books, stories, community resources.”

Southwest Human Development is an avid supporter of creating a solid foundation of early literacy, which young children need to thrive. Learn about Southwest Human Development’s free, comprehensive early literacy programs and help prepare children for success in school and life.