United Way Awarded Duke Energy Foundation Funding for Real Men Read
United Way serving Howard and Tipton Counties is pleased to announce it has received a $15,000 grant from the Duke Energy Foundation for Real Men Read, a volunteer reading program supporting early learning.
Real Men Read mobilizes community members as volunteer readers in early learning center classrooms and enrolls children and their families in The Imagination Library. The Imagination Library mails one age-appropriate book per month to the home of children aged zero to five at no cost to families thanks to the Duke Energy Foundation and donors to United Ways’ annual fundraising campaign.
“Duke Energy is proud to support Real Men Read in Howard County”, said Kevin Johnston, Duke Energy Community Relations Manager for the Kokomo area. “This program really makes it fun to read to children in early learning centers knowing we are making a difference in their lives and school success later.”
Real Men Read has helped to enroll over 2,819 children in Imagination Library, and more than 1,377 children have graduated out of the program since its debut in 2017. Imagination Library delivers over 20,000 books a year to children in Howard and Tipton Counties.
“Our volunteers are passionate about reading and giving all children in the community the support they need for success,” said Santos Salinas, Edward Jones Investments, and Chair of the Real Men Read Committee. “The volunteer commitment is once a month for 30 minutes and will leave a lasting impression not only on the children but also on the volunteer.”
Real Men Read and The Imagination Library are a collaboration working towards a larger community goal of 75in5, which strives to increase kindergarten readiness on the first day of school from 45% to 75% by 2022.