Funds benefit HWS and six local schools
The America Reads program at Hobart and William Smith Colleges received a $1,000 grant from Dollar General to provide books for the children in its program so they can begin to build their own home libraries.
Now in its 11th year of existence at HWS, America Reads is the largest program run by the Public Service Office, matching college students with area second and third graders to work one to one on reading skills. Through this program, the Colleges place 72 tutors to work with 66 children per academic year in six local schools, including North Street, West Street and St. Francis-St. Stephen’s schools in Geneva; Border City Multi-age and Lafayette Intermediate schools in Waterloo; and Romulus Elementary School in Romulus.
This grant will provide four new reading level appropriate books to each America Reads child. This will allow them to establish or build their own library of books at home. Studies have shown a strong correlation between the number of books a child owns and reading success experienced in school. The grant will also provide funding for the America Reads Coordinators at each school (outstanding returning tutors) to be given the book “Intervening for Literacy: The Joy of Reading to Young Children” by HWS professors Charles Temple and James MaKinster.
“We are grateful for the financial support from Dollar General and the added service these funds will provide to this very important program,” said Ave Bauder, director of Public Service at HWS. “Through this Hobart and William Smith program, children in area schools receive an additional 6,000 hours per school year of additional one-on-one time for those struggling with reading. The grant will allow us to go beyond our school based activities so that children can have their own books to read at home.”
Dollar General awards grants to support non-profit organizations committed to youth initiatives, particularly programs that contribute to the advancement of literacy and basic education. Locally, Dollar General has stores in Clifton Springs, Newark, Penn Yan, Seneca Falls, Ovid and Waterloo.
The Public Service Office strives to connect students with service opportunities that promote the common good on campus, in the area surrounding Geneva, and outside the local region. Last year, HWS students, faculty and staff recorded 33,000 hours of service through its programs.