United Way June Newsletter – Discover.  Connect.  See your impact

For all children, educational success is driven by year-round learning. But for children in need, access to books or summer enrichment programs is often a challenge.

And without this access, children in low-income communities can experience profound summer learning loss, resulting in up to a three month achievement gap among students each summer, which over time can add up to as much as two years as students get older.

That's why your support of United Way has been so critical. One of the programs that you have made possible is our Summer Learning Collaborative, which prevents summer learning loss and increases children's reading skills by integrating literacy activities into existing summer camp programs in targeted communities of need.

This program has grown to 28 locations, in part because of Tocqueville Society members like Dick and Maxine Charlton, who once again generously co-chaired our annual Golf Tournament at Oyster Harbors, providing critical support to the Summer Learning Collaborative and other enrichment programs. We are so fortunate to have friends like Dick and Maxine, who recognize the critical needs in our community and reach out to help - year after year.

Read on to learn more about this program, and about how you can foster learning over the summer with your own children or grandchildren. Together, we are turning summer time into learning time for more than 3,000 children across the region, helping to reduce the achievement gap and create the kind of change that will help more children succeed.

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summer learning 

For children who are already falling behind, a lack of reading during the summer can set them back even further.

According to First Book, while families in upper- and middle-income communities have an average of 13 books per child, low-income communities have one book for every 300 children. In addition, 67% of students in our own communities are not reading proficiently by third grade.

That's why United Way is bringing it’s nationally-recognized Summer Learning Collaborative to communities where third grade reading proficiency rates are far lower than the state average. In United Way's targeted communities, 66% of children are not reading proficiently, compared to 44% of children not reading proficiently statewide. Third grade reading proficiency is widely seen as a key indicator for a student’s future academic success. Learn more >>


reducing summer learning loss


Arrange a tour of a Summer Learning Collaborative site
September 29: Save the Date for Tocqueville Celebration

boost summer learning

Make summer learning fun--for you and the children in your life!

A new school year may be an entire season away, but it’s never too early to stem summer learning loss and prepare for the first school bell. To help your children keep their minds sharp during the busy days of June, July and August, here are some enjoyable, easy activities (taken from the Getting Ready for Kindergarten activity calendar) that you can do as a family to ensure that the summer months are filled with brain-building fun.  Get started! >>

summer learning and literacy at camp 

One part summer camp. One part summer learning. All fun.

"Not every kid has the chance to go to a summer camp," said Brian Flynn, Director of Operations for the Cape Ann Y. "With this program we’re able to provide that as well as give them the opportunity to learn outside of the classroom."

United Way helped kickstart the program when it launched in 2014, providing funding to help give kids a leg up in the reading game.The goal: to offer a fun, memorable summer camp experience while simultaneously boosting literacy competencies. Start learning >>

tocqueville opportunities 

June 30 marks the end of our fiscal year, and we are working with donors and companies to ensure that we can continue to support the important work being done in our community.

If you are already counted among our donors this year, thank you for your incredible support. If you have not yet had the chance to renew your support, or you aren't sure, please be in touch so we can continue to count you among our generous supporters. Contact Rosie Martel-Foley >>






United Way of Massachusetts Bay and Merrimack Valley| 51 Sleeper Street, Boston, MA 02210| Tel: 617-624-8000 | unitedwaymassbay.org