Writer, producer, and actor, Seth MacFarlane has promised to match up to $1 million in pledges made on the Kickstarter website, so that an online version of “Reading Rainbow” can be available for classrooms that lack adequate funding.
LeVar Burton, star of Roots and Star Trek: Next Generation, was the host of Reading Rainbow, which aired on television from 1983 to 2006. It was launched as a best-selling tablet app in 2012, and aims to expand its reach with a subscription-based home version that will start at $5 monthly. MacFarlane volunteered to donate $1 million after hearing that “Reading Rainbow” needed to raise at least $5 million. More than $4 million had been pledged by 83,000 contributors. Burton said he was speechless by MacFarlane’s grand gesture. Initailly, the Kickstarter’s funds only allowed 1,500 of the neediest classrooms to have free access to Reading Rainbow. Now, with MacFarlane’s additional funds, at least 6,000 classrooms will have access to the free online version.
“It was my mother who taught me that, by picking up a book, I could go anywhere and be anything” Burton said in a posting on Kickstarter.
MacFarlane’s offer is in effect through 3 p.m. EDT on July 2, when the online fundraiser is set to end.