Opportunity Details

Children & Youth Education
Families, Low-income Communities

Age Minimum (with Adult): 18+, Minimum Age:18+

Referral: SitStayRead

Description SitStayRead's mission is to advance children's literacy skills using an engaging curriculum, dedicated volunteers, and certified dogs.  Founded in 2003, SitStayRead brings teams of trained volunteers and Certified Reading Assistance Dogs into 17 low-income Chicago Public Schools.  SitStayRead, with the help of volunteers, works hard to serve low-income families and students with the proper resources to increase students' literacy skills while in the classroom.  From Rogers Park to Bronzeville, from Old Town to Austin, SitStayRead is all over the map and in classrooms five days a week throughout the school year. For an hour a week for up to eight weeks a season, SitStayRead's volunteers, both human and canine, are in the classroom, during the school day, working with first through fourth graders on
different reading and writing activities as dictated in the SitStayRead curriculum.  Book Buddies, or volunteers without dogs, are at the table with the students during the hour in the classroom as literacy tutors, dispensing the reading and writing activities for the day.  They will read with the students in a variety of ways, then brainstorm with them for their own stories, and then help them in writing their own, creative stories.  SitStayRead's Book Buddies love working with children, love to read and write, and would love to make a difference in the lives of the children that live in their city!

Impact SitStayRead's volunteers are at the heart of the organization.  Without the help and support from volunteers, they wouldn't exist and schools across Chicago wouldn't receive this program.  SitStayRead's volunteers make such a huge impact on the lives of Chicago's at-risk students.  With the one-on-one attention they give them in the classroom, they not only help increase kid's literacy skills, but also build their confidence into becoming great readers, and writers!  They make a large difference in their lives!

Time  Monday-Friday in the morning or afternoon.  This program does not happen in the summer months (July, August, September).

Location Rogers Park, Austin, Humboldt Park, West Town, East Garfield Park, West Garfield Park, North Lawndale, Chinatown, Fuller Park, Bronzeville, Back of the Yards, Englewood, Chicago Lawn, Altgeld Gardens

Volunteer Activity Type Tutoring

Great for

  • Individuals (volunteers who come on their own)
  • New Volunteers (people who have never volunteered before)
  • Committed Volunteers (people who can come on a regular basis)
  • Skilled Volunteers (pro bono work, volunteers with a specific skill set, etc.)
  • Older Volunteers (volunteers aged 55 and older)

Partner Information SitStayRead's mission is to advance children's literacy skills using an engaging curriculum, dedicated volunteers, and certified dogs.

Requirements volunteers must complete to serve

  • Application
  • Training Meeting (2 hours)
  • Background Check-- CPS Background Check Process

***This is a Referral Opportunity through Chicago Cares. Chicago cares does not manage the volunteer experience for these projects and volunteers are subject to each partner organization's volunteer protocol. Chicago Cares is not liable for injuries, loss, or damage at referral projects. No Chicago Cares staff will follow up with you about the logistics for this program, however, a staff person from the managing organization will be responsible for doing so.*** 

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