Book Boosters works in conjunction with Diva Productions, Inc., to create multimedia programs for families, and provide health information of critical importance for consumers who are battling diet-related illnesses, especially non-whites. Diva Productions works as a production partner with Book Boosters to produce The Kitchen Diva! radio and television programs, and educational, animated, and bilingual videos for children, including ANGELA'S NOTEBOOK and THE STORYTELLER'S SERIES. Corporate sponsors provide underwriting funds for The Kitchen Diva! programs via tax-deductible grants to Book Boosters, Inc.
Angela Shelf Medearis, founder of Diva Productions, Inc., is also the founder of Book Boosters, Inc., a non-profit 501(c)(3) organization dedicated to tutoring elementary school children who need a boost in their self-esteem and help with their reading. Book Boosters is currently run by her husband and non-fiction co-author, Michael Medearis, in partnership with the Travis County 4-H after-school program. The program is conducted in 23 Austin Independent School District elementary school campuses. Book Boosters, Inc. is also the sponsoring organization for several educational children's television shows.
Book Boosters is a multicultural literacy organization that was established in l988. The mission of this 501(c)(3) organization is to create generations of children who love reading and writing and who perform well academically. Since its inception, the organization has tutored thousands of economically disadvantaged children in Austin and San Antonio, Texas. In addition to weekly tutoring, Book Boosters provides new books, snacks, computer resources, summer camps and other incentives to children who are desperately in need of academic help and role models.
For more than four years, Book Boosters has coordinated efforts with the Travis County 4-H Children And Parents Involved in Technology And Literacy (CAPITAL) Project, a youth development component of the Texas Agricultural Extension Service. Book Boosters and the 4-H CAPITAL after-school programs are targeted to 23 schools in the Austin area with a significant "at-risk" youth population and several community centers located in or near housing projects. 4-H CAPITAL is a cooperative effort of the Texas Agricultural Extension Service, Travis County and 22 local collaborators, which include non-formal education groups, engineers, youth-serving agencies (such as Book Boosters), businesses, civic organizations, community coalitions, individuals and educators.
Book Boosters began working with 4-H to provide the following services in addition to tutoring: staff for the reading program, literacy training for all after-school staff, books and materials for the children they serve and participation in their cable access program, which informs the public about new efforts to promote literacy within the 4-H.
The target program group has the following identified risk factors: 86.2 percent economically disadvantaged, 33 percent limited English proficiency, 27 percent mobility rate, living within a primary area for juvenile crime and gangs, low academic achievement, high dropout rate and a large number of latchkey children. Book Boosters and the 4-H CAPITAL provide elementary school students with the opportunity to enhance their literacy skills while having a fun and interesting learning experience through the study of literature, creative writing, nature and science.