EASLEY, S.C. (WSPA) – According to the South Carolina Department of Education, the literacy rate in the state is 77.6%. Additionally, only 54% of third grade students in South Carolina are reading on grade level. 

In order to improve this number, the Open Book Project, a non profit organization raises literacy awareness and inspires all ages to enjoy reading, especially books they can call their own. 

“What we do is we raise funds for literacy projects for civic organizations, schools, nursing homes, and  assisted living. We want to take literacy from the little beady people all the way up to the elderly,” said Samantha Jones, the Open Book Project President. 

Jones said they receive gently used books from the community who live in Pickens, Anderson, Oconee counties and parts of Greenville county. 

“All of the books are donated. We turn around and sell them and take the funds that we make on these sales and push them back out into the communities where they’re needed,” said Jones. 

The Open Book Project raised $3,800 from their first sale and distributed that money to local schools and The Upstate Tutoring Center. 

“We provide tutoring services after school for reading, writing, spelling and not all of the families have access to be able to pay for those services. The Open Book Project provided two tuitions for this past summer and one was for a first grader, one was for a third grader and both of them grew exponentially in their reading and was able to start off the new school year in a much better place than they left the school year,” said Andrea Bishop, Founder of Upstate Literacy. 

The Open Book Project is having their second book sale October 13th from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. and October 14th from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. at 112 West 2nd Ave. in Easley, SC.