Reading Pals program needs volunteers

Early Literacy Coordinator Joan Whitson reported to Historic City News that the Early Learning Coalition is currently seeking volunteers for their Reading Pals program.

Volunteers go to an assigned St Johns or Putnam County childcare center, once a week, and read to children — either one-on-one, or in small groups.

“Studies show that most of our children’s brain growth occurs before kindergarten,” Whitson said. “This creates the best opportunity to influence our children during their lifetime of learning.”

Ginny Levito, one volunteer Reading Pal in St Augustine told reporters that she enjoys her time reading to groups of children at Living Waters Preschool in St Johns. Whitson said that reading one-on-one to children also sets the groundwork for their future ability to read and learn.

Reading Pals also participate in putting on special literacy programs and story times throughout the year in different childcare centers.

There will be a special training and information session on Wednesday, September 5 at 9:00 a.m. at the St. Augustine Record, Whitson said.

To RSVP for this session or for more information about becoming a Reading Pal, contact Whitson by calling 904-819-3544 or visit for more volunteer opportunities.

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