The Youth Readers program benefits teens, young children and the communities in which they live through the simple yet magical experience of reading together.
High school student volunteer to read with preschool aged counterparts on a regular basis, which enhances the teen's sense of self, helps them realize their community leadership potential, and allows them to experience the impact of making a difference in the life of a young child.
Young children feel important when teenagers spend time with them in this way. They also learn to look forward to reading time and, in being read aloud to, are benefiting from the single best predictor of their future success in reading and in school.
100% of Youth Reader reported feeling an increased sense self-confidence and leadership skills.
71% of Youth Readers reported an increase in their library use and started reading more for personal enjoyment.
95% of parents reported stronger relationship with their preschooler through reading together.
“Being a part of this program has helped me so much in life. It has taught me the value in reading and has encouraged me to love reading. Being connected with the children has given me happiness and joy. I love this program. ”
High School Student Volunteer
“…It was a new experience for me but it made me realize that I am important in my community and my contribution has an impact. The small kids we read to are happy every Wednesday they see us. They always asked me ‘are you coming next week…’ ” High School Student Volunteer
“The program has a very positive effect on not only the Reading Role Models but on the young kids as well. Also, I feel a better connection with my community responders after participating in the program since I was able to see them interact with the community first-hand.” High School Student Volunteer
“…Children get excited for Wednesdays! During outside play in the afternoon, the children sometimes see the ‘Readers’ walking home and the children get so excited!! They yell, ‘Hi Readers’ or ‘Mrs. Russell, look there are the Readers!!’ ” Child Care Center Teacher
“Reading to the children has been such a delight. I would never have expected to be impacted by them so positively. I am grateful to have been part of this experience.” High School Student Volunteer
“I had a similar experience when I was in kindergarten. The older students would come in and do activities with us, like reading, and I remember looking forward to it every week. It made a huge impact in my life and I wanted to do the same for these younger students!” High School Student Volunteer