2017 Grant Recipients

LITERACY CONNECTS-5th Year Grant-$15,000

Agency Background: Literacy Connects was created in 2011 through the merger of five existing literacy organizations based in Pima County. Their major programs include: “Reach Out and Read Southern Arizona” which partners with doctors to prescribe books and encourage families to read together. “Reading Seed” helps children learn to read and “Stories that Soar!”, a multi-faceted literacy and arts program which empowers youth by giving voice to their original words and creative ideas.

Focus of 2017 Grant: Reading Seed Children’s Literacy Program Funding is requested to support Literacy Connects Reading Seed program at five high-need elementary schools in the 2017-2018 school year. Reading Seed recruits and trains volunteer reading coaches from the community to assist children reading below grade level in grades kindergarten through five.

Measurable Results: Analysis of DIBELS (Dynamic Indicators of Basic Early Literacy Skills) reading scores shows that Reading Seed students experience an average of 30% greater gains in assessed literacy skills than the general student population. Because students referred to the Reading Seed program typically begin a school year 0.5-2.5 grade levels behind their peers, this significant increase in the rate of learning is what they need to reach reading at grade level. These gains are expected at Nash, Walter Douglas, Blenman, Dietz and Myer- Ganoung. In 2017-2018 at least 90% are expected to demonstrate improved attitudes about reading and increased confidence in their ability to read.

Contact: Amber Mazzei, Director of Development amazzei@literacyconnects.org