The Molina Foundation was established in 2004 to reduce disparities in healthcare and education. If the name sounds familiar, that’s because it was started by Dr. Martha Bernadett, daughter of Molina Healthcare, Inc. founder, Dr. C. David Molina. Since 2003, the Book Buddies™program has been working to increase literacy in children and adults by partnering with other organizations and literacy programs nationally. Through the Book Buddies™ program, the foundation has distributed hundreds of thousands of books and started book clubs at elementary schools.
Molina Foundation’s work through the Book Buddies™ program is a great example of how the health and education sectors can collaborate. What this means for a community and for a healthcare organization is not only less illiterate residents but a decrease in poverty. Literacy status effects a persons life much like the domino effect. Literacy determines our ability to move through the education system and hence our educational attainment (e.g. high school, college degree, graduate degree), what jobs we can get (high or low paying), and ultimately the quality of life we have.