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United Way Reading Success AmeriCorps Program

Twenty-seven AmeriCorps members provided one-on-one and small group tutoring to 563 kindergarten through third grade students during the 2016/2017 school term.  AmeriCorps members also partnered with several local organizations to show their continued commitment to our community, completing several service projects. 

Sumter and Lee County schools saw significant progress in student performance on standardized assessments as a result of tutoring from AmeriCorps members.  378 students received 30 or more hours of tutoring during the school term.  United Way AmeriCorps members provided over 10,300 hours of tutoring and 1,595 hours of indirect service.

Dr. Virginia Brown is a first year AmeriCorps member that serves at Cherryvale Elementary School.  She came to our program with an immense amount of experience as a former elementary and middle school teacher, a former guidance counselor, and with previous work as a school administrator, parenting education director, and clinical professor for student teacher candidates.

“Serving as an AmeriCorps member is a great opportunity to spend your retired time to continue supporting students of the community,” said Dr. Brown.  Serving in the United Way Reading Success AmeriCorps program allows members to give back to their local community through early childhood literacy and community service involvement, giving back in so many different ways to our tri-county area.

Reading Success AmeriCorps members dedicated many hours of service to our community over the past school term. They partnered with the American Red Cross, Central Carolina Technical College, Sumter Senior Services, Good Samaritans of Bishopville, and Sumter United Ministries to complete services throughout our area.

American Red Cross Pillowcase Project and AmeriCorps members taught fire safety to over 300 students in the Sumter community.  Central Carolina Technical College and AmeriCorps members distributed 880 donated books across three elementary schools in Lee County.  AmeriCorps members provided over 80 lunches to senior citizens at Sumter Senior Services, while more than 200 families were supported with the Good Samaritans of Bishopville at the Christmas Give-away; and dinner was served to over 30 homeless community members at the Sumter United Ministries Shelter. 

Although this school term is completed, recruitment is in full swing for community members to join our Reading Success AmeriCorps program for the upcoming year.  Serving in AmeriCorps allows you to give back to your community, the place we all call home.

This upcoming school term, the AmeriCorps Reading Success AmeriCorps welcomes a new Program Director, Pamela Buddin.  Pamela hopes to continue the program’s success and to improve early childhood literacy in Sumter and Lee County with the help of AmeriCorps members.  If you are interested in learning more about the Reading Success AmeriCorps program or would like to apply to become an AmeriCorps member, contact Pamela Buddin at 803.773.7935 or