Does your zip code determine your future?


The Bronx is in Literacy Crisis

  • As of 2016, only 56% of high school graduates in The Bronx are college ready. Poverty is a major factor, with 40% of children in the South Bronx living below the poverty line. A child raised in poverty is 13 times less likely to finish high school on time, if at all.
  • 70 percent of third grade students in The South Bronx are unable to read at their grade level. The New York City Department of Education has found that children who fail to meet the third grade benchmark are more likely to dropout of high school and remain in poverty.
  • The South Bronx has the poorest congressional districts in the nation and has the most unemployed, according to a 2016 report by South Bronx Rising Together (SBRT)

Why should you care?

You should care because this literacy crisis has a solution. You can be part of that solution. Here’s how…

  • Volunteering consistently at Bronx community centers, schools, and non-profit organizations goes a long way.  If you volunteer on a regular basis, you will begin to develop a better understanding of what is going on in Bronx communities.
  • Ask community leaders, exactly how you can help.  Perhaps you have a unique set of skills that can make a major impact.
  • Donate resources.  All it takes is one book.  Many Bronxites cannot afford to build their own libraries at home.  Many institutions in The Bronx lack up to date technology, i.e.  computers.  Today record numbers of New Yorkers are relying on their libraries for free job information, Internet access, computer classes, business information, after-school programs, and much more.
  • Contact your representatives.  Demand that they make literacy in The Bronx a priority.

My name is Greg Hernandez.  I’m a Bronx native, resident, photographer, and filmmaker.

I grew up on Jerome Avenue, blocks away from Yankee Stadium.  I’m lucky to have  both of my parents, who provided a stable foundation for me.

Poverty means wasted lives.  Being deprived of the essentials for living a consistent life creates adverse conditions for people, who could have grown to their full potential, prospered, and contributed to society.

My team and I are producing a short documentary highlighting this literary crisis facing The Bronx.


Why a short documentary?

I believe one of the best ways to solve a major problem is to showcase both the problem and solution, visually. This crisis, has been born out of years of neglect, ignorance, racism, and greed.

  • I believe in people.  Solutions come from people.  I believe that Bronxites have the solution to this literacy challenge in their communities.
  • My plan is to visually showcase the collaborative efforts of activists, authors, city officials, educators, entrepreneurs, and parents in a short expository doc.
  • It’s a way that I can contribute to my borough.  I’m a storyteller.  I want to show the story of Bronx resilience.

Documentary Collaborators


Turning the Page on Illiteracy in the Bronx

Illiteracy and poverty are often intertwined. Without the ability to read, your chances of securing employment, a home, and the life you want, dwindles.

It begins with the desire to learn, but continues with the opportunity.

1 Step 1


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