On May 19, United Way of Greater Cleveland hosted summer learning kickoff events at five Cleveland Metropolitan School District schools. Each event promoted summer learning with literacy-themed raffles, giveaways, prizes and an opportunity to sign up for summer reading programs at neighborhood libraries. Literacy Explosions were hosted at Harvey Rice, Patrick Henry, Almira, Walton and Case elementary schools.
“Research shows students are susceptible to losing a large portion of what they’ve learned throughout the school year once summer break hits,” says United Way Vice President of Community Impact Traci Jadlos. “Our goal is to keep our community’s kids engaged in summer learning by combining academics with fun, hands-on learning experiences.”
Approximately 150 University Hospitals staff members volunteered at the summer learning kickoffs to distribute literacy kits and engage with students. The event was the inaugural volunteer opportunity for UH150 – a yearlong celebration of University Hospital’s 150th anniversary.
“We are extremely proud of our relationship with United Way and are excited to partner with them for this campaign,” said Steven Standley, UH chief administrative officer. “We are celebrating giving back to the community with our 150th and collaboration with United Way is a natural fit as we both have helped shape Cleveland’s charitable landscape.”
The Cleveland Public Library also participated in the summer learning kickoff. Librarians were on site to host storytelling sessions and encourage students to sign up for library cards and the annual summer reading program.
Dave’s Supermarket provided more than 3,600 pieces of fresh produce to all five schools to serve as healthy, kid-friendly snacks for the event.
“United Way hosted these fun-filled summer learning kickoffs to remind more than 1,700 local students to continue reading and learning during their vacation,” said Jadlos.
Funding for United Way of Greater Cleveland’s literacy campaign, which includes the summer learning kickoffs, was provided by Red Nose Day USA – a $23 million campaign to address children’s issues in the United States and 14 other countries.