United Way of Greater Milwaukee & Waukesha
Over the summer, children can lose 2-3 months of reading skills learned during the school year.
To help combat this “summer slide” United Way of Greater Milwaukee & Waukesha County is leading the Summer Reading partnership, a community-wide effort to get a variety of books into the hands of children in Greater Milwaukee.
Starting June 22, 70,000 free books will be handed out to children at playgrounds, parks and the Hunger Task Force’s summer meal sites.
The Summer Reading program officially kicked off, June 5, at Hunger Task Force when the first shipment of 20,000 donated books arrived ready to be sorted.
Darriene Davis, a Northwestern Mutual employee, was one of 20 volunteers from the community who volunteered to help organize and pack the books. Darriene was excited about having the opportunity to give back.
“I have a 3-year-old at home who likes to read, so this was a great opportunity for me to be able to give other kids the same opportunity to read as well,” She said.
In the State of Wisconsin 67% of youth do not read at a proficient level.
This loss is more common among children from low income homes, and research shows this loss accounts for up to 80% of the achievement gap between low and high- income students.
It is suggested children read 15 minutes a day to stop summer slide.
The goal of United Way’s Summer Reading partnership is to have every child read 6 age-appropriate books by the end of summer.
Nicole Angresano, VP of Community Impact at United Way, is not only excited about how that goal will impact children in our community academically but also how it will potentially spark a love of reading they may not have had.
“Whenever we’ve had the opportunity to give a child a book, not just a new book, but a book they pick out themselves, they have this overwhelming sense of joy and it’s just the most wonderful thing to see,” she said.
For more information on where books will be distributed this summer and on how to donate books for kids head to: https://www.unitedwaygmwc.org/Stop-Summer-Slide?utm_source=Newsletterutm_medium=2015%20Newsletter&utm_campaign=Stop%20Summer%20Slide