The Read United Initiative - - About the Program and Opportunities!
Jan 06, 2020 12:00 PM
Sharon Sarber - - Volunteer Engagement Specialist
The Read United Initiative - - About the Program and Opportunities!

Sharon Sarber, Volunteer Engagement Specialist at Elkhart and Goshen Community Schools, In Partnership With United Way of Elkhart County presents the Read United initiative - - learn about this great program and the opportunities to serve as volunteers in our community.

Read United is a special program sponsored by the United Way of Elkhart County and consists of three programs:

  1. Real Men Read runs every October to November - - This program places positive male role models in Goshen and Elkhart elementary school classrooms to read aloud to their assigned class.
  2. Reading Camps run every January to March - - This program provides extra one-on-one tutoring and reading practice for elementary students who are falling behind their peers.
  3. Spring Into Reading runs every April to May - - This program places volunteers into elementary classrooms to read aloud to classes of children.

Read United is starting to recruit for their next program, Reading Camps. The program matches a community volunteer with a 1st-3rd grade student identified as being just below grade level for reading skills. Students are invited to meet with mentors after school twice a week over an 8-week period.  Volunteers may sign up for one or both sessions, or participate in the Sub Pool. Volunteers are provided a brief training the week before the start of the program. All materials are provided as well. Volunteers meet with students in a supervised setting at their respective schools. Reading Camps in Elkhart Community Schools include Bristol, Eastwood, Mary Beck and Mary Daly. Sessions meet T/Th from 4:00-5:00, starting Jan. 27th and running through March 19th. Reading Camps in Goshen Community Schools include Chandler, Model, Parkside, Waterford and West Goshen.  Sessions meet T/Th from 3:00-4:00pm. Over the course of the hour, volunteers read to students, then students read to volunteers, followed by an enrichment activity. The last 15 minutes are spend playing a skill-building game (usually the favorite part of the hour!). All Camps culminate in a celebration on March 19th for students, families and volunteers. NWEA test scores show the benefit of this program through increased “camper” scores. It is the most challenging Read United program regarding volunteer recruitment.