United Way of South Central Kentucky Launches Reading Initiative at Hopkins Elementary School

Photo: Volunteer readers pose with Hopkins Elementary leadership, Mrs. Sarah Burnett and Dr. Hubert Schroer, along with Crystal Cox from United Way of South Central Kentucky at the December 7 reading session.

Somerset, KY – 12/07/2022 – United Way of South Central Kentucky launched a new literacy initiative called “Real Men Read” at Hopkins Elementary on December 7, 2022. Thirty-two men in our community volunteered to read to individual classrooms as part of this new program.

“We are excited to expand our impact on youth literacy through the Real Men Read program,” stated Crystal Cox, executive director for United Way of South Central Kentucky. “We also recognize that many students in our schools do not have positive male role models, so we hope this program is able to encourage students toward success through building positive relationships in the community.”

Volunteer readers have the opportunity to read in classrooms one session per month during December, January, February, March, and April. The books for the program are being provided by United Way of South Central Kentucky through a grant received from the Dollar General Literacy Foundation. Upon completion of each month’s programs, several copies of the book read that month will be donated to local public elementary school libraries.

“The students at Hopkins were so excited for the Real Men Read program! We are so blessed to have a community that values our children and is always looking for ways to get involved in their lives. All of the staff at Hopkins are appreciative of the time and commitment that our Real Men Read volunteers made with our students,” stated Dr. Hubert Schroer, Hopkins Elementary School’s principal. “After the volunteers left, many students continued asking questions about how they can emulate their new role models and how to be successful like them. Somerset Independent School District is very fortunate to have so many supporters that invest in our children.”

The first book used for the program was Pete the Cat Saves Christmas. In January volunteers will resume monthly reading sessions with additional books from the Pete the Cat series. United Way of South Central Kentucky hopes to continue and expand the Real Men Read program in the coming years.

About United Way of South Central Kentucky
United Way fights for the health, education and financial stability of every person in every community. On a worldwide level, United Way is supported by 2.9 million volunteers, 9.8 million donors worldwide and $4.7 billion raised every year and is the world’s largest privately funded nonprofit. The United Way of South Central Kentucky services ten counties and supports twenty-five agencies, providing more than 71,000 instances of support each year. For more information about United Way of South Central Kentucky, please follow us on Facebook @UWSCKY or visit http://www.uwscky.org.

About the Dollar General Literacy Foundation

The Dollar General Literacy Foundation is proud to support initiatives that help others improve their lives through literacy and education. Since 1993, the Foundation has awarded more than $219 million in grants, helping more than 16.1 million individuals take their first steps toward literacy, a general education diploma or English proficiency. Cal Turner, Jr. founded the Dollar General Literacy Foundation to honor his grandfather and Dollar General’s co-founder, J.L. Turner, who was functionally illiterate having dropped out of school in the third grade to support his family. The Foundation aims to provide support to schools, libraries and nonprofit organizations that seek to improve adult, summer, youth and family literacy initiatives.  To learn more about the Dollar General Literacy Foundation, visit www.dgliteracy.org.

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