Children’s Reading Partners Seeks Volunteers for 2019-2020 School Year

WEST HARTFORD, CONN. (August 27, 2019) – In just 30 minutes per week, you can help children improve their literacy skills and develop a lifelong love of books. Children's Reading Partners is seeking volunteers for its Elementary Express program, which serves at-risk students in kindergarten through sixth grades at 15 schools in Bloomfield, East Hartford, Hartford, Manchester, New Britain and West Hartford and offers reading enrichment opportunities for children at P. Faith McMahon Wintonbury Library in Bloomfield, East Hartford Public Library, and the Charter Oak Boxing Academy in Hartford. 

Both teachers and volunteers praise Elementary Express. “Children’s Reading Partners volunteers help our students grow in the areas of decoding, fluency and comprehension - and they also make a lasting impact on students’ social and emotional well-being,” notes Richard Tomkowit, a resource teacher from S.A.N.D. School in Hartford. “It is amazing to witness the smiles that spread across our students’ faces when their reading volunteers arrive.”

“Elementary Express benefits both the volunteers and the children with whom they read,” says Robin Landau, who co-chairs Children's Reading Partners with fellow volunteer Rona Gollob. “These days, many people are looking for ways to have an impact on the world. This program shows you what is really happening in nearby neighborhoods and gives you an opportunity to create lasting change. Working with individual students, I've seen that the one-on-one attention helps them gain confidence in themselves and their abilities, which impacts not just their reading skills but their entire outlook on life.”

It’s easy to become a volunteer with Children’s Reading Partners. Simply attend a training session, submit your application and select a 30-minute-per-week time slot to read to a child. Volunteer times are available during the school day, after school or in the evening.

Prospective volunteers may attend any of the following training sessions:

  • Thursday, September 12 at 6:30 p.m. at Congregation Kol Haverim, 1079 Hebron Avenue, Glastonbury
  • Tuesday, September 17 at 6:30 p.m. at the Mandell JCC Innovation Center on the Zachs Campus, 335 Bloomfield Avenue, West Hartford
  • Wednesday, September 18 at 1:30 p.m. at the Community Services Building on the Zachs Campus, 333 Bloomfield Avenue, West Hartford

To learn more or to sign up for a training session, please contact Ronni Breiter at or (860) 727-6129.

Children’s Reading Partners is an initiative of the Jewish Community Relations Council, part of the Jewish Federation of Greater Hartford. It welcomes volunteers of all faiths and serves students of all backgrounds. Since its founding in 1998, Children’s Reading Partners has served over 7,000 students at 20 Greater Hartford locations and provided more than 8,000 new and gently used books to students and their classrooms. Major grant funding is provided by the Jewish Community Foundation of Greater Hartford, SBM Charitable Foundation, the Jeffrey P. Ossen Family Foundation, People’s United Community Foundation, and George A. & Grace L. Long Foundation at Bank of America.

Photo caption: Help local children improve their reading skills and create a foundation for academic success by volunteering with Children’s Reading Partners.