Every year National Volunteer Week (NVW), which will be celebrated April 6-12, reminds us that the power to change our communities starts with each one of us. And nothing is more worthy of our collective efforts than ensuring that every child learns to read and is given a chance to contribute to the future of our community. Our schools are working hard to improve literacy for our children; however they can’t do it alone. That’s why volunteers are so essential. Whether working inside or outside of the classroom, volunteers make a real difference in helping children to boost academic achievement.
Oakland Reads 2020 is working with The Campaign for Grade-Level Reading, a collaborative effort by foundations, nonprofit partners, states and communities across the nation to ensure that more children in low-income families succeed in school and graduate prepared for college, a career, and active citizenship. Oakland is one of 140 communities nationwide working toward the same goal: increasing the number of low-income students reading well by the end of third grade.
Additionally, there are many great organizations in Oakland that provide volunteer opportunitues to support literacy for Oakland’s children. Opportunities range from working directly with children (one on one tutoring), to helping teachers level books for classroom libraries. To support these organizations the Oakland Literacy Coalition offers free training for volunteers who want to help preschool and elementary school students improve their reading, vocabulary and comprehension skills. To date they have trained hundreds of volunteers and offered free TB testing and fingering printing to help these volunteers transition quickly into service.
See what some of partners have to say about the great work our Oakland volunteers are doing:
“Our volunteers at Super Stars Literacy are an integral part of the positive environment and successful outcomes we provide for our students. Volunteers give our young learners the one-on-one attention they need to become confident in their academic ability to learn and achieve. We cannot thank our volunteers enough for the personal commitment they have made to creating equal access to education and for supporting our Super Stars!” –Superstars Literacy
“Volunteers are the lifeline of Reading Partners. Every community member that volunteers allows us to enroll one more student into the Reading Partners program, which means one more student is able to receive the assistance they need in order to succeed academically. I believe in a sustainable community, where we help one another.” – Reading Partners
“One of our quieter volunteers, Shelia, is an ECBA member worth knowing on a first name basis. With an average of six hours per day at Parker Elementary, and an average of four days a week, serving her kindergartners is the best part of her day. Working in a variety of forums including one-to-one, small groups and with the class at large; she loves every minute of it. Shelia feels her presence and consistency can only aid the children as they learn the key skills they need to succeed when they begin 1st grade. Shelia’s story exemplifies the valuable characteristics we observe in all Experience Corps volunteers; commitment, dedication, and compassion.”- Experience Corp Bay Area
“WriterCoach Connection helps students develop their writing and critical-thinking skills by providing each student in a class with a writer coach who works with the student, all year long, on his or her classroom writing assignments. Volunteers are not only important to our program, they are indispensable to it, because every one of our 650 writer coaches is a trained community volunteer. The relationship between the volunteer and the student is the key to everything we are able to accomplish in the realm of raising writing achievement. With no volunteers, we have no program. They are our most precious asset.”-WriterCoach Connection
“Three cheers for the 56 Rotary members who have volunteered over 100 times for various activities this year, supporting all 25 transitional kindergarten classrooms in OUSD! They have personally delivered supplies, toys and books, and will be chaperoning students on field trips to the Oakland Zoo and Children’s Fairyland. We are especially proud of the five Rotarians who volunteer regularly in classrooms.”-Oakland Rotary
In honor of NVW, we invite you to come celebrate service with us at Mua Bar & Restaurant in Oakland on April 9 from 5:00 pm-7:00 pm. Come show appreciation for those who serve in our community. Please RVSP to firstname.lastname@example.org if you plan to attend.
We are facing a challenge that can only be solved by working together as a community; we are so grateful to those who have stepped forward to help improve literacy for Oakland’s children. Want to learn how you can get involved with Oakland Reads 2020? Contact us!
Oakland Reads 2020
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