United Way of York County is committed to getting books into the hands of children in our community. Having age appropriate books in the home is one way to stay on track to reading proficiently by the end of third grade, which is one of the earliest indicators of long-term school success. And, in many low-income families, there are often zero age-appropriate books in the home. We have created several initiatives that get books into the hands of children and encourages reading at home.
... you can help!
As we place books into our community, we are always in need of more books! New and used children's books can be dropped off at our office at 800 E. King Street, Mondays - Fridays between the hours of 8 a.m. and 4 p.m. We also have a wish-list on Amazon where you can purchase books (we always have a high need for Spanish books) and send them directly to us. CLICK HERE to view our wish list. If you are interested in doing a book drive at your office, please contact us so that we can provide any materials that you may need.
The Early Literacy 100 Book Challenge is a pre-literacy program that encourages families to read to their children every day. Books are delivered to participating early education classrooms and the children take them home and track the number of books they read, with a goal of reading 100 books during the school year.
The Early Literacy Read to Me Challenge is a pre-literacy program that encourages York County families to read to their 1- and 2-year-old children. Age-appropriate books are delivered to participating early learning center classrooms at Crispus Attucks, YMCA Hanover, YMCA of York and York County, YWCA Hanover and YWCA York. Children take home a new book each night, and parents track the number of books read, with the goal of reading 100 books during the school year.
United Way Reading Ready Corners are located in high-traffic areas where children and adults may experience wait times. The goal is two-pronged: First, to encourage reading while adults and kids are waiting; and second, to offer the child a book to take home with them. CLICK HERE for a Reading Ready Corner flyer that lists all of the locations.
In 2020, United Way of York County created Reading Ready Corners geared specifically toward kindergarten readiness and transition. CLICK HERE to learn more about Kindergarten Here We Grow.
In 2017, United Way of York County began installing Little Free Libraries to provide additional outlets for distributing books. There are currently five Little Free Libraries supported by #yorkreads, located at the United Way of York County building, Union Lutheran Church, the Bob Hoffman Branch of the YMCA of York and York County, at Golden Connections Community Center in Red Lion, and at York City Community of Hope located at Hannah Penn K-8.
As part of our focus on literacy, United Way of York County has partnered with Rotary Club of York, Family First Health, and the York County Literacy Council to launch Reach Out and Read (ROAR). The concept of ROAR is to utilize well visits at pediatrician appointments where doctors will issue a “prescription” to read at home. At every well visit, children ages 6 months through 5 years old will receive a new book to take home with them.
Funding for the program was provided by United Way of York County, Rotary Club of York, and the Early Learning Investment Commission. Additional contributions were made by the Meckley Foundation and Dillsburg Kiwanis. This partnership in funding will ensure the program will run effectively through 2020.
#yorkreads initiatives operate with generous support from
as well as Dillsburg Kiwanis, the Donald B. and Dorothy L. Stabler Foundation, and the York County Community Foundation.