Nearly 70 percent of Boston elementary school students are not proficient in reading. And, in Fall River and New Bedford, 3,000 students need a literacy mentor – but do not have one. That’s why AARP Massachusetts and Create the Good are joining forces with two Bay State mentoring programs for the upcoming academic year to help children in Greater Boston, Fall River, and New Bedford.
Boston’s Generations Incorporated is an affiliate of Experience Corps, a national program that engages older volunteers as literacy tutors in public school settings; it is one of the largest and most effective programs of this kind in the country. Nearly 350 Experience Corps members currently serve with Generations Incorporated. In 2009, these volunteers provided 75,000 hours of tutoring to more than 2,000 students – who made 60 percent more progress than non-participating students.
SMILES Mentoring is a school-based mentoring program that matches adult volunteers with students in need. In 2009, 58 percent of students attending grades three - 10 in New Bedford Public Schools needed to improve their language skills. SMILES literacy-based programs help these elementary school children read and succeed in school.
How can you help?
Whether you have just a few minutes to spare or are looking to volunteer on a regular basis, you can make a difference.
Donate to these online book drives. In just five minutes and for less than a dollar, you can help a child improve their reading skills by donating a new or gently used book. Choose a book and donate today!
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