Inspire your team to create global impact with their voices.


Why Read-A-Thon?

Are you looking to inspire your team 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 over 200,000 learners around the world.

Read-A-Thons are brought to you by:

Hover to see the impact your voice can make!


How does it work?

Your team comes together in a race to narrate storybooks on Simbi. Narrations are added to Simbi’s global library and then to Simbi Foundation’s BrightBox solar classrooms, reaching up to 200,000 learners around the world!


You narrate…

Compete with each other, renew engagement and purpose, and support global literacy as you narrate books into the Simbi platform.


The World Reads Along…

Your narrations are accessed by learners around the world via Simbi’s online library or in Simbi Foundation’s BrightBox classrooms!


Schedule Today.

Are you interested in having a Read-A-Thon with your organization, company, corporation, or business? Are you looking to excite and motivate your co-workers or employees to create a global impact?

Schedule a meeting now!



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

See your impact

Get a weekly impact report to see how many people have been reading along to your narrations.


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

Simbi Volunteer Certificate blank

Volunteer Hours

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

students in yellow shirts sitting at desks using Simbi Foundation

Impact Boost

Turn your digital contribution into a physcial one by donating to a Simbi Foundation BrightBox.



Explore testimonials from previous Read-A-Thon participants!

“636 books narrated and thousands of learners impacted around the world. A wonderful way to kick off the new year. Inspired by Simbi Foundation & Simbi, and proud of the Salesforce team! If you’re looking for a meaningful, covid-friendly way to give back, consider a Read-A-Thon with Simbi Foundation & Simbi.”

Jesse Friedland

Regional Manager, Healthcare & Life Sciences, Salesforce

“Narrating books alongside my UNHCR colleagues was a meaningful and memorable experience. We started off the week at the UN headquarters (Uganda) narrating books. By Friday, we were able to visit classrooms and could see students in the Bidibidi Refugee Settlement reading along to our narrations! My colleagues and I have continued to narrate books on a weekly basis.”

Joseph Asali

Assistant Education Officer, UNHCR

“It hasn’t been easy finding ways to volunteer, so when the opportunity came up with PwC Canada to team with Simbi Foundation & Simbi this past week, I jumped. It’s been fun to spend a few moments each day recording myself and my kids reading books for students across the globe to learn to read with.”

August 2020

PwC Employee

“Being able to narrate stories to help students across the globe sparked a new life into me that had been missing since the pandemic started…We always looked forward to receiving our weekly reports to see the true measure of our impact and it was fun sharing how many students in which country listened to our narrations. It has been an amazing experience and one that I hope to continue.”

Erin Skrypnyk-Bajor

Principle Non-Profit Renewals Manager,




Simbi Foundation collaborates with communities to install BrightBoxes: digital, solar-powered classrooms built from shipping containers. Stocked with laptops, tablets, projectors, digital resources like Simbi, charging services, and more, each BrightBox can support up to 6,000 students per week.


Looking for other opportunities?

School Students Reading

School Read-A-Thon

Excite your class about reading, while supporting readers globally!

Simbi Foundation Brightbox onsite

BrightBox Dashboard

See progress on our next BrightBox, crowdfunded by Read-A-Thon participants and corporate partners!

Learn more about Read-A-Thons.

Got questions about narrating? Check out the answers here!

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 take narrations and add them to Simbi Foundation BrightBoxes in an offline format, boosting accessibilty for remote and refugee learners in Simbi Foundation partner communities.

Is every narration added to BrightBox classrooms?

While the vast majority of narrations are added to Simbi Foundation’s BrightBox classrooms, a number of Simbi’s publisher agreements do not permit Simbi Foundation to add their content to offline BrightBoxes.

We are currently working with Simbi to try and bring more of this small amount of restrcited content to BrightBoxes to ensure that learners in Simbi Foundation’s partner communities can enjoy an even bigger library.

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.