Literacy builds
bright futures.

To provide reading mentors to elevate early childhood literacy, creating a bright future for our community.

Older woman reading with a little girl, bright yellow background with a sunburst image in the background
Elevate
Encourage
Inspire
Inpact
Read NW Icon
Elevate
Encourage
Inspire
Inpact
Read NW Icon
Elevate
Encourage
Inspire
Inpact
Read NW Icon
Elevate
Encourage
Inspire
Impact
Elevate
Encourage
Inspire
Impact
Elevate
Encourage
Inspire
Impact
The United States and Clark County are currently grappling with a...

Literacy Crisis

info graphic of 75 percent

Seventy-five percent of children who enter 4th grade behind in reading, never catch up.

45%

Nearly half of 3rd graders do not read at grade level and 3,500 kids in Clark County need reading support.

70%

Seventy percent of all incarcerated adults can't read at a 4th grade level. There is a direct connection between low early literacy skills and our country’s rising incarceration rates.

MAKE A DIFFERENCE

Become a
Reading Mentor

Discover how you can volunteer and make a positive impact on the lives of children in Clark County.

two photos of the same woman and little boy over a 1 year period

Reading Buddy who received a prize and award for the reading tree incentive after one year of working with Reading Mentor Mona Chisholm.

Frequently Asked Questions

How often do Reading Mentors volunteer with students?

Volunteers come once per week for approximately 30 minutes and meet 1:1 with the same student for the duration of the school year from October - May. 

Who trains volunteers and what does training look like?

Read Northwest Volunteer Coordinators will train any new volunteers. Training can take 60-90 minutes over the course of one day, with the exception of Boys & Girls Club volunteers who must complete additional training requirements. All materials as well as ongoing training are provided.

Do volunteers have to pass a background check?

All volunteers must pass a background check with the school district that their selected school is in. 

What qualifications do I need to be a volunteer?

Volunteers must be at least 18, pass a background check, and have good moral character. We ask volunteers to be consistent and punctual with their time and encourage and support reading confidence in their Reading Buddy. Volunteers should bring positive energy to each session and conduct themselves in a professional manner.

What if a volunteer has an appointment, vacation, or is sick?

We understand that life happens. Please communicate with your Volunteer Coordinator as soon as you know that you’ll be absent for your scheduled reading session (by 8:00am or ASAP the day of session). Often Volunteer Coordinators will step in as a “substitute Reading Mentor” when possible. 

Are volunteers alone with students?

No, a volunteer is never alone with a student. Volunteers come in small groups during their reading sessions and sit 1:1 with their reading buddy in the same classroom.

Where do volunteers have reading sessions?

Reading sessions are held on-site at the school or location a volunteer is assigned to. Some locations offer classroom spaces, while others might be located in a hallway or a public designated space.

Still have questions?

Feel free to inquire if you have any questions; we're here to help!

Our Impact

"I wish everyone could have a reading buddy so that everyone could be happy. Everyone in my classroom wishes that they had their own reading buddy."

Hathaway Student

Reading Buddy

"Every child should have the chance to read in a safe and comfortable environment and I am thrilled to be a part of nurturing and nourishing through the written word and by being a buddy!"

Lori Perkins

Volunteer, Cape Horn-Skye

“…during our first session he told me that he didn’t mind skipping recess because he liked spending time with me. Talk about completely melting my heart!”

Jacquelyn

Volunteer, Hathaway

Read Northwest is looking for volunteers, like you.

Your time and generosity are truly appreciated.