RSVP Reading Coach Volunteers tutor and mentor middle school students to help them improve their reading skills. They serve as positive role models for young adolescents in an effort to help them succeed academically and in life. Volunteers are paired with students and meet once a week in five schools throughout RSVP’s service area.
The Reading Coach Program is a certified mentoring program with the State of Iowa. January is National Mentoring Month, a time to honor mentors and celebrate their efforts. In addition to tutoring students in reading, volunteers are caring adults in the lives of the students they serve.
“Both common sense and the latest research tell us childhood and adolescence have changed in recent decades. Many young people do not have a non-relative, significant adult in their life,” Larry Hill, Chair of the RSVP Advisory Council said. “Mentors fill a huge void and the legacy they leave in the life of a child surfaces in both the child’s behavior and attitudes. RSVP Reading Coaches are priceless.”
Molly Anderegg, RSVP director, said the need is great for more Reading Coach Volunteers. “Each school RSVP partners with has more students in need than volunteers,” she said. “People tend to think working with middle school students can be challenging, but more often than not, it is also rewarding. I encourage older adults to consider this opportunity and help an adolescent student in their community.”
RSVP of North Central Iowa has 33 Reading Coaches serving this school year as mentors. They meet with students each week to work on literacy skills and often develop strong bonds with students. RSVP would like to thank the following Reading Coach Volunteers for their dedication to youth in North Central Iowa:
Forest City Middle School – Forest City: Judith Anderson, JoAnn Bartleson, Barb Braun, Annette Bruns, Cheryl Burke, Cheryl Hanna, Joan Hansen, Ken Hansen, Cynthia Korth, Roberta Kraft-Abrahamson, Karolyn Overlie, and Mary Schaefer
Garner-Hayfiled-Ventura Intermediate School – Ventura: Carrol Boehnke, Dolores Boehnke, Sandi Flickinger, Patty Hestad, Kathy Hinrichs, Eunice Kinsella, Sue Nedved, Twyla Quinn, and Janelle Renner
Lincoln Intermediate School – Mason City: Ralph Cassady, Mary Church, Jack Gannett, Raymond Heimbuch, Linda McCollum, John Nolan, Vicky Nolan, and Julie Thoreen-Birkedal
North Iowa Middle School – Buffalo Center: Joe Angstman and Connie Brooks
West Hancock Middle School – Kanawha: Kathy Johnson and Jean Sheets
To become a Reading Coach, or for more information about RSVP of North Central Iowa, visit www.niacc.edu/rsvp/ or contact 1-888-466-4222 ext. 4256, (641) 422-4256 or firstname.lastname@example.org. RSVP of North Central Iowa serves the counties of Cerro Gordo, Hancock, Winnebago, and Worth.
RSVP is sponsored by North Iowa Area Community College. It is part of a national network of programs called Senior Corps that recruits adults 55 and older to use their skills, talents, and life experience to help meet community needs through volunteer service. RSVP of North Central Iowa’s primary focus is childhood literacy, including programs such as Reading Coaches. RSVP is partly funded by the Corporation for National and Community Service, State of Iowa, United Way of North Central Iowa and local county governments.
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