United Way’s Volunteers Read to Nearly 5,000 Students on Read Across America Day  

Mar.08, 2024

Hartford, Conn. (March 8, 2024) — United Way of Central and Northeastern Connecticut mobilized 200 volunteers to read to children at schools in East Hartford, Hartford and New Britain as part of Read Across America Day, an annual event that promotes the joy of reading for young children.   

“One of United Way’s key priorities is to close literacy gaps for children across our region. Reading adds to their imagination, helps them achieve academic milestones and creates opportunities for their future success,” shared Eric Harrison, President and CEO of United Way of Central and Northeastern Connecticut. “Creating this impact for students by mobilizing hundreds of volunteers from different companies is what United Way does best. We appreciate all the workplaces that use opportunities like Read Across America Day to involve their employees in causes they care about in their community and the volunteers who give their time to help children succeed.”  

This year, volunteers read the book Opal Lee and What it Means to Be Free by Alice Faye Duncan to second and third graders in 40 schools in the greater Hartford area 

Hartford Public Schools is proud to partner with the United Way and the Hartford Public Library. Through this collaboration, our students have greater access to the joys of reading, which will contribute to their academic success and well-being,” added Dr. Leslie Torres-Rodriguez, Superintendent of Hartford Public Schools. 

 “Fostering a love for reading in our children makes a tremendous impact on their future success, and Read Across America Day is just one way we can show our young people the power and joy in reading. I’m grateful for the hundreds of volunteers and partners who have taken time out of their day to read to our classrooms, and I’m excited to join the United Way for this annual tradition,” shared Mayor Arunan Arulampalam, City of Hartford. 

Some additional special guests who joined United Way for Read Across America Day include: Mayor Connor Martin, Town of East Hartford; Thomas Anderson, Superintendent East Hartford Public Schools; Mayor Erin Stewart, City of New Britain; Dr. Tony Gasper, Superintendent of the Consolidated School District of New Britain; and Taylor Kinzler and Caitlin Burchill from NBC Connecticut.      


About United Way of Central and Northeastern Connecticut      
United Way brings people and resources together to address immediate needs and find long-term solutions to challenging problems. United Way does this by investing in programs and services, leading community change initiatives, and mobilizing resources and volunteers to ensure that children succeed in school, people get jobs and are financially secure, people are healthy, and basic needs are met during tough times. For more information, visit unitedwayinc.org.     


Media Contact: Anyeline Céspedes López | United Way of Central and Northeastern Connecticut   | acespedes@unitedwayinc.org | 787.502.0436