Fully Fund YMCA READS! – An Amazing Letter from Site Coordinator, James Dineen, Tampa

To Whom It May Concern,

I strongly urge you to reconsider the funding for our YMCA READS! Program here in Florida.  As a site coordinator, I cannot stress enough to you the daily impact our program had on the children.  The vast majority of these students do not have the resources and access, to not only important reading strategies, but ajameslso the vast library of books our program offers them.

When my students first started at the beginning of the 2014-2015 school year, the majority of them could not identify letters, let alone letter sounds.  At the end of the year, I had Kindergartners reading full books to myself and my mentors.  If you could only see the gratitude and pure excitement on their faces, you would appreciate the extreme importance of our program.

The job we, as coordinators and directors, do is not monetarily gratifying.  Our job does not offer perks and bonuses. We do this job to be a mentor, teacher, and friend to these struggling readers.  We do this job to see a smile on a child’s face, when he or she finally understands how to blend or decode a word.  Most of our students just need someone who cares about their reading comprehension advancement outside of their classroom.  Without us, more and more students will be retained due to their under performing reading scores.  Without us, more and more children will lose interest and access to books.

Please consider the consequences if these children do not have our YMCA READS! Program to help improve their reading comprehension, and help expand their overall interest in reading.  Thank you.

Sincerely,

James Dineen

YMCA READS! Coordinator

Twin Lakes Elementary

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