Inspire your class to create global impact with their voices

A Read-A-Thon with Simbi motivates reading, provides school-wide insights, and empowers your learners to make a difference.


Why Read-A-Thon?

Are you looking to inspire your students and promote giving back? From any location, with any device, a covid-safe Read-A-Thon gives you the chance to support the literacy and education of learners around the world.


How does it work?

Your readers come together in a race against time to narrate storybooks on Simbi. These narrations are added to Simbi’s global library and to Simbi Foundation’s BrightBox solar classrooms, reaching up to 197,000 learners around the world!

Step one

You narrate…

Compete with each other, motivate reading, and support global literacy as you narrate books into the Simbi platform.

Step two

The World Reads Along…

Your narrations are added to Simbi’s Global Library and Simbi Foundation’s BrightBoxes so learners around the world can read along!



Take a look at what else a Read-A-Thon offers!

See your impact

Your weekly impact report tells you how many people have been reading along to your narrations, and where!


See how many books and minutes you’ve narrated – compete with each other to create impact!

Simbi Volunteer Certificate blank


At the end of the Read-A-Thon, get a certificate celebrating your impact, or log your volunteer hours!

Motivate Reading & Impact!

Students at Raha International School narrated 184 hours in just four weeks!



Explore testimonials from previous Read-A-Thon participants!

“I have never hosted a read-a-thon with over 1000 students; however, Simbi has made it so easy that it will become an annual event in the school calendar. The ease of organisation, the positive effects it had on reading during the Read-A-Thon month, and the ability for our student to impact other students all over the world has made this a must-do.” 


Teacher, Raha International School, Abu Dhabi

“My two sons joined in on the fun and participated in the Read-a-thon. We truly made it a family affair and between the 3 of us we narrated 561 books. They were quite proud of themselves and they gained quite a bit of confidence in their reading along the way.”


Erin Skrypnyk-Bajor

Principle Non-Profit Renewals Manager,

“An easy to organize, low maintenance event. Mutually beneficial for both students narrating books and those using the program as a ‘learn to read English’ tool. Students are inspired and motivated by the ‘feel good factor’ when they receive their weekly global reports. Our Read-A-Thon was a huge success and we are hoping to continue with Simbi as an annual event.”


Literacy Coordinator, Raha Internatnal School, Abu Dhabi


Let’s get reading!

Are you looking to excite and motivate your school, club, or team to create a global impact? Fill out this form to sign up for a Read-A-Thon and read for good for less than the price of a coffee!

Contact Form

Learn more about Read-A-Thons

Have questions about reading on Simbi? Check out the answers here!

What is the cost of a Read-A-Thon?

The cost to participate in Simbi & Simbi Foundation’s low maintenance, high impact Read-A-Thon program is $2.50 per reader.

You will receive prorgram and technical support, as well as kick-off or celebration sessions upon request.

How does my voice create an impact?

Your voice can make an impact in two unique and exciting ways when reading with Simbi!

First, once your narrations have been processed and uploaded to Simbi’s online Global Library, internet-connected readers from 60 countries will be able to choose to Read Along to your narration, helping them build reading fluency!

Second, we also take every narration and manually add them to Simbi Foundation BrightBoxes in an offline format, making Simbi and all of its narrations accessible for remote and refugee learners in Simbi Foundation partner communities.

What's the difference between Simbi Foundation and Simbi?

Simbi Foundation is research-driven non-profit charity working to enhance access to education for the next 3.5 million remote and refugee learners. Through collaboration with communities, Simbi Foundation has developed the BrightBox solar-powered classroom solution, capable of supporting up to 6,000 students per week. Learn more here.

Simbi is a reading technology that empowers youth to use their voice in helping others learn to read around the world. Simbi combines learners’ narrations with the text of a story to create an engaging audiovisual book that learners worldwide can read along to from the accessible and inclusive Global Library. Learn more here.

Why does Simbi use the "Read-Along" method?

Simbi lets learners Read Along to digital books that are simultaneously narrated to them. This “bi-modal” approach motivates reading through its immersive experience and has shown in Randomzied Control Trials to boost literacy scores x2.

Will I get volunteer hours?

Yes! At the end of a Read-a-Thon, you can request a volunteer certificate from Simbi Foundation and Simbi!

And there’s more! Whether individually, or with friends, family, or coworkers, you can keep reading with Simbi long after a Read-a-Thon, gain more volunteer hours, request a volunteer certificate, and recieve a weekly Impact Report, which shows you who’s been reading along to your narrations, and where!

Which books need to be narrated?

Simbi has thousands of titles in its library, many of them children’s storybooks that focus on building reading fluency! A lot of these books have yet to be narrated. To access these books, all you need to is click the ‘Require Narration’ checkbox in the top right corner in order to display all the books that need narrating!

Of course, just because a book has already been narrated by somebody, that doesn’t mean that you can’t narrate it as well! Once again, the more narration, the more choice for learners around the world.

What happens to my narration once I've finished recording?

Once you’ve finished reading, your narration will be reviewed by the Simbi team, just to make sure that everything’s smooth and ready for upload to the Global Library!

After the review, your narration will appear on the Global Library, within the book that you narrated, ready for students around the world to Read Along with.

English is my second language, can I still narrate?

Absolutely! We welcome speakers with all variation, accents, and dialects of English to narrate with Simbi. Why? Because we believe that there’s no single way of speaking English, and want to make sure that any learner, anywhere, can have the choice to Read Along to an accent, dialect, or voice that they want to, can relate to, or with which they are familiar. Therefore, the more variation of narrators, the more choice for learners around the world! 

Why English? While the Simbi languages library is growing, we at Simbi Foundation focus on providing support with learning English because our partner communities in Uganda and India follow a national English-language curriculum.

If you know another language, you can also help us to translate books into even more languages, helping even more students.

Will my weekly Impact Report show how many remote and refugee learners have been reading along to my narrations?

At the moment, we are only able to show you your narrations’ statistics for online Simbi users, and not for remote or refugee offline users, since many Simbi Foundation partner communities are remote and without reliable internet access. That’s why our BrightBox solutions provide access points to quality, relevant, and offline learning content. 


Looking for other opportunities?

Corporate Read-A-Thons

Corporate Read-A-Thon

Motivate your colleagues or employees to read and support readers globally!

Simbi Foundation Brightbox onsite

Donation Opportunities

Learn more about corporate partner & donation opportunities to support Simbi Foundation.