Barbara Bush Foundation and Worldreader Launch New Multigenerational Reading Collection: ReadLife Bookshelf


Washington, D.C.  – The Barbara Bush Foundation for Family Literacy and Worldreader have partnered to release ReadLife Bookshelf, a new multigenerational reading collection for adults, children, and educators.

Launched this week in celebration of National Adult Education and Family Literacy Week, ReadLife Bookshelf aims to promote literacy skill development in adult learners, children and families, using online resources to broaden reach and access. ReadLife Bookshelf offers:

  • A curated collection of digital books for adults and children, including titles tailored to the reading levels and interests of adult learners
  • Guided activities to encourage adult learners and their families to deepen and enhance the learning experience
  • Resource guides to help instructors promote literacy skill development
  • Bilingual (English and Spanish) books and resources
  • Anytime, anywhere access to online materials across all platforms (Computers, tablets and smartphones)
  • New books and materials each month, with upcoming seasonal themes including “Mysterious Stories,” “Gratitude” and “Let’s Celebrate.”

The ReadLife Bookshelf collection aims to promote equity and remove barriers that often prevent low-literate adults/parents from building their literacy skills by providing convenient online access to engaging, relevant reading materials.

Roughly 54% of American adults lack proficiency in literacy, reading below the equivalent of a sixth-grade level. Yet, books for emerging readers most frequently focus on topics that are of interest to children. To fill this gap, the Barbara Bush Foundation and Worldreader worked with publishers and authors to curate a selection of books that combine high-interest topics with accessible vocabulary – creating a unique collection for adult learners.

“Adult literacy is family literacy, but the literacy needs of parents and caregivers are far too often overlooked,” said British A. Robinson, president and CEO of the Barbara Bush Foundation. “Through the combination of high-quality content and innovative technology, ReadLife Bookshelf can empower parents to improve their own literacy skills – boosting equity and unlocking the doors of opportunity for millions of families.”

The new collection is also designed to promote family literacy engagement by encouraging parents and children to read together, fostering a literacy-rich home environment. Learners and instructors can access the ReadLife Bookshelf collection across all their devices and platforms, thanks to Worldreader’s low-cost digital reading solution, BookSmart.

“When parents read, children read. And when children read, they lay the foundation for a successful life. We are thrilled to partner with the Barbara Bush Foundation to provide the books and technology necessary to set families up for success,” said David Risher, co-founder and CEO of Worldreader.

The ReadLife Bookshelf collection will grow over the next three years to include guided activities, compelling adult learning-focused stories, and over 200 children’s books in English and Spanish. All resources are available for use by learners and educators at no cost.


About the Barbara Bush Foundation for Family Literacy: The Barbara Bush Foundation for Family Literacy has been the nation’s leading advocate for family literacy for more than three decades. Established by former First Lady Barbara Bush in 1989, the Foundation is a public charity dedicated to creating a stronger, more equitable America in which everyone can read, write and comprehend in order to navigate the world with dignity. To learn more, visit

About Worldreader: Working with partners globally, Worldreader provides the tools, training, and resources families and caregivers need to get children (3-8 years of age) reading at least 25 books a year with full comprehension. Since 2010, Worldreader has supported more than 21 million readers in over 100 countries.

Press Inquiries

If you’re a member of the media or would like more information, you can reach Lauren Sproull, Vice President of Communications, at 850.562.5300 or