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Help spread the love of reading this school year

The United Way of the Midlands Reading Consortium (MRC) was formed to increase the number of children reading at grade level by the start of fourth grade.

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A volunteer with Midlands Reading Consortium playing a reading game with a student.

Volunteering begins in early October 2023 and ends in May 2024.

Photo provided by United Way of the Midlands

Looking for an opportunity to make a difference and volunteer this year? Enter: Midlands Reading Consortium (MRC), a literacy-focused program that supplements and enhances shared reading experiences to ignite a love of reading for students in Pre-K-3rd grade.

MRC is a partnership between United Way of the Midlands and 19 elementary schools across Richland, Lexington, Fairfield, Calhoun, and Orangeburg counties. Volunteers work with students one-on-one, once a week during the school year to help ensure they are reading proficiently by third grade (which is key to later student success).

While sessions last for 30 minutes, many volunteers choose to work with two students back-to-back for one hour during the week to increase their impact. MRC provides volunteers with free training, materials, and the support needed to help focus on improving language skills and reading for students.

This school year, MRC is introducing a STEM component to its programming. The goal: to destigmatize STEM by cultivating an interest in science, technology, engineering, and math from an early age among elementary students.

Ready, set, read — register for MRC