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AARP Experience Corps received the 2012 Eisner Prize for Intergenerational Excellence for its efforts to unite multiple generations to bring about positive, lasting changes in local communities.
AARP Experience Corps is the association’s newest program for 50-plus adult volunteers who want to tutor and mentor youth in their communities. Operating in 19 cities across the country, AARP Experience Corps helps to improve literacy primarily in kindergarten through third grade.
‘It is gratifying’
“Working with the children during these past five years has been both challenging and rewarding. When a child asks, ‘Will you be my tutor again?’ for the second or even third year, it is gratifying. When that child achieves measurable success in reading and general deportment, it is doubly gratifying.”
– Nathalie Black
'This has exceeded my wildest dreams'
"You can't imagine how a first-grader can challenge you. I wanted to do something entirely different, something exciting, something useful. This exceeded beyond my wildest dreams."
– William Clifford
‘The impact could be everlasting’
“It's really been a two-way street. I feel like I get a whole lot more than I could give out. I don't know how many times in my life I've heard a successful individual say that a neighborhood person, or a teacher, or a mentor, said something or did something that made a change in them. You're not just working with a child today. You're making an impact that could be everlasting.”
– Que Payne
New Haven, Conn.
‘A powerful learning tool’
“Experience Corps helps to develop a caring culture of young people. It allows children to see that older people have a lot to offer. There's a lot of wisdom there. There's a lot of understanding. There's a lot of love. When we have Experience Corps tutors together with children and teachers, it's a good mixture and it's a powerful learning tool for children.
– Matthew Riley, principal, Cross Country Elementary/Middle School
‘The strength of the community’
“Experience Corps shows us that we cannot meet the needs of our children alone. Experience Corps members bring the strength of the community into the schools.”
– Shirl E. Gilbert, regional superintendent
‘Test scores continue to rise’
“Since Experience Corps has come into the schools, test scores have continued to rise. Its no small secret that Experience Corps has played a large role. We need this program in all of our schools.”
– Paul Vallas, former CEO, School District of Philadelphia
‘I really didn't know what was wrong’
"She wasn't reading to me at all before the tutoring. She would read 'cat' and 'dog,' only words that are so common. I was extremely worried. I really didn't know what was wrong. Now she reads with the other kids."
– Iesha Lewis, parent
New York City
“As a parent, I've seen a significant change in my daughter's ability to write, read and identify words. I give a lot of credit to the wonderful tutors from the Generations Incorporated [host to Experience Corps Boston].”
– Hector Alvarez, parent
‘A wonderful source’
“Generations Incorporated [host to Experience Corps Boston] has been a wonderful source of tutoring for [my granddaughter]. I have been invited to the different activities at the school and see how much the tutors help the children.“
– Paulette Gray, grandmother
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