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Ready Readers

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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Children & Youth, Education, Human Services, Literacy, Public & Societal Benefit, Remedial Reading & Encouragement, Youth Development Programs

Mission: Our mission is to inspire preschool-age children from low-income communities to become readers by reading aloud to them, increasing their exposure to quality books, and providing literacy-related activities. The vision of Ready Readers is to have all children, regardless of socio-economic status, enter kindergarten with strong early literacy skills and print motivation, which are necessary to become successful readers when they are ready to read.

Results: This school year, an independent evaluator has pre-tested a sample of the preschool-age children in our program using the early literacy skills standards outlined by the Missouri Early Learning Goals. These same children will be tested again at the end of the school year and progress will be evaluated. Our short-term targeted goal is that 75% of the children in our program acquire the emergent literacy skills as defined by state standards. Teachers and our volunteer readers always complete an end-of-the-year evaluation form, asking them about the early literacy skills that their children have acquired over the year

Target demographics: preschool-age children (2-5 yrs old) who live in low-income communities

Direct beneficiaries per year: 10,000 preschool age children living in low-income communities

Geographic areas served: the St. Louis metro area and surrounding Missouri and Illinois counties

Programs: Ready Readers is a St. Louis-based nonprofit organization dedicated to inspiring preschool age children from low-income communities to LOVE books and to have the literacy skills necessary to become readers when they are ready to read. Trained, passionate volunteers read high-quality books aloud to the same classroom of children for 30 minutes every week, and then provide stimulating reading-related activities. Six times during each school year and once during the summer, the volunteer readers also distribute new books for each child to take home and keep.

Community Stories

22 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

1

Volunteer

Rating: 2

The concept behind Ready Readers is powerfully simple and serves a need in every community. I am pleased to be a part of the program. Both the children I read to and I learn something every week as we share the adventures within the pages we read. There are various supports and team building opportunities for volunteers to help ensure success.

As an Illinois based Ready Reader, I've experienced bumps along the road that I hope will be smoothed out in the future. Unfortunately, the rivers divide more than the land masses of Illinois and Missouri. To be effective in each jurisdiction, organizational representatives must come to understand and work with each area in ways that the prospective community will embrace. Otherwise we are doomed to fail leaving behind an unintentional but real trail of frustration and second class resentments.

Comments ( 1 )

profile

Ready Readers 12/23/2015

We are always interested in discussing your experiences. Our future plans include local chapters with local administration.

2 Sarah282

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Ready Readers is an incredible way to build strong community foundations. It connects higher risk pre-schoolers with quality literature, exposure to adults that love reading as well as provides the framework for in-home reading. Strong beginnings yield measurable, favorable results for students, families, and communities.

Melissa289

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

The readers love what they do. In teaching, that makes such a difference. The model of the same reader with the same class for a school year is critical for the relationship between the kids and the reader to develop into one of trust and joy. This is a fantastic organization!

Board Member

Rating: 5

Amazing group with incredible volunteers and employees who are trying to combat illiteracy.

1 Pat_68

Volunteer

Rating: 5

This organization has certainly far exceeded my own expectations! I helped start Ready Readers in 1997. Today, I am a just an honorary board member, but I am also a volunteer reader. Like many other readers, I feel that I get as much from each of my weekly reading session as as the children do, and I always want to give them more. The best thing I ever did for the organization was retire in 2005, so it could evolve into the amazing organization it is now. With its small staff and its strong management, Ready Readers' 500+ volunteers are reading weekly and giving quality books to about 10,000 low-income preschool children in our area. This isn't just talk, but rather a hands-on effort to help break the scourge of poverty and illiteracy, which is at the root of so many problems in our area and in every city.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I have been reading with Ready Readers for well over a decade and it is an absolute joy to see the children's faces when we read to them. Their enthusiasm and joy is catching.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I read for this amazing program. I have been with ready readers nearly three years. I see the difference in the children as they learn to love books.

Ashlee4

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I started at Ready Readers because my mom was doing it and I thought it was one of the most amazing things ever!! I have been reading for almost 2 years now and I have loved every minute of it. Thank you Ready Readers for giving me a chance to make a difference in the lives of the children that I read to.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I have volunteered for Ready Readers as a reader. It was such an amazing experience for me to get to go to these pre-schools and read to the kids and see the pure joy on their faces when they got to take home their very own copy of the book I read to them. Ready Readers shares the joy of reading and empowers these kids to learn to love to read.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I have been a volunteer reader for Ready Readers for five years, and can't say enough about how wonderful this organization is! Led by the terrific Lisa Greening, the staff is compassionate, exhuberant, and genuinely love what they do. I am honored to be part of this organization, and would encourage anyone who loves to read to little ones to please consider volunteering for Ready Readers!

Megan98

Board Member

Rating: 5

Ready Readers is run by a passionate staff. The volunteers are given many training opportunities and support. Volunteers are truly appreciated.

The simple act of reading aloud to low income preschool students results in measurable increases in the skills and activities necessary to help these kids start kindergarten ready to learn to read.

1

Donor

Rating: 5

Ready Readers in St. Louis is amazing! The board is committed to their mission, the executive director and staff are devoted professionals and the volunteers are involved and loyal.

I donate to this organization and ask my friends to do the same. Ready Readers is a good steward of their resources and gets the job done. I rank them at the top of nonprofits in the region.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

The continued dedication of hundreds of individuals only makes this program more special. The children are full of smiles ear to ear when you walk in a room to read to them!

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I have been a reader and donor for about five years and it is one of the most rewarding experiences I have had. I truly feel my weekly trip to the pre-school brings extra learning and joy to the children and the teachers! The children LOVE to read and LOVE to receive the books Ready Readers provides. They take the books home and read to family members which is so important. I know they do this, because when we read the stories I have sent home with them they know so much word for word! A fabulous organization to support - with donations and/or time!

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Having worked with and for several nonprofits over the last 20+ years, I'm impressed by how much Ready Readers achieves with such a small staff. Seven incredibly hard working people do a yeoman's job of training and guiding more than 500 volunteers to serve at-risk children across the St. Louis metropolitan area. No frills here, which I appreciate. My donations are actually used to serve the children.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I have been reading for Ready Readers since November 2012. I feel it is an honor to volunteer for this organization. Ready Readers is growing by leaps and bounds. When people ask what I have been doing since my retirement. I proudly say I read for West Florrisant Head Start to children ages 3-5.

The kids are hilarious, and they make me laugh. My name which is one syllable but quicklybecomes a two/ three syllable word when I walk into their class room.

To keep their attention which is hard to do some days, I use the tools we are provided in our training session.

I hope to be with this Ready Readers for many years,

Volunteer

Rating: 5

My sister's friend does this, and when my sister found out about it, she said that she knew that I'd definitely volunteer - and I did. At the moment, I'm reading at 2 schools - 5 classes of kids of different ages.
The days I read to them are the best days of the week for me. They LOVE the time they spend, and they have their favoriie books. And they LOVE getting their own books.
It's wonderful to see them really love to have someone read to them, and the kids (4- & 5-year olds) are really happy when they start learning to read and are able to pick words out.
This is the greatest organization, and I'm so happy to be a volunteer. If everybody supported Ready Readers, lots of kids would have a wonderful opportunity to do more with their lives. Reading helps people in so many ways............Kathy

Donor

Rating: 5

I first partnered with Ready Readers through a professional networking event. I was inspired to use them as the chartable partner for my company's annual meeting. My contact with Ready Readers, Lisa Greening, was great to work with and made everything simple. The employees at my company enjoyed the book drive and almost doubled our goal of 500 books donated! It was great to be able to help out a great organization, which helps so many children in our communities.

Client Served

Rating: 5

When I was the childcare director of St. Nicholas Preschool, Ready Readers volunteered at the center(they still do!).One of their volunteer organizations provided our center with 300 books to start a library.
The parents were able to check out books and read to their children in the library. Thanks Ready Readers for your continuous service to the St. Louis Community and surrounding areas.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Reading to my 3-5 year olds has enriched both my life and theirs. When I get there, the excitement level rises with expectation of fun through reading. I am retired and my Mondays are now the best day of my week. A friend told me about Ready Readers and once I started reading, I was hooked.
I also do projects for Valentines day (cards with their pictures on them), bunny baskets are coming for spring and something yet to be decided for the end of the school year. They love the books they get to take home and can't wait until I bring the next one to give to them. They are gracious and grateful.
The teachers have been a great support and help me with everything I do.