The Witkin Foundation Donates $10,0000 to Bolster Critical One-on-one Literacy Intervention
By Chelsea Boniak | September 8, 2023
Generous Grant Enhances Students’ Ability to Learn to Read so They Have a Much Fairer Chance of Success in School and … in Life
Children Rising is pleased to be once again the recipient of a generous grant from the Bernard E. & Alba Witkin Foundation. The $10,000 grant marks the second year of support from the foundation to support Children Rising’s one-on-one reading tutoring program, Succeeding by Reading.
We are grateful for the ongoing support of the Bernard E. & Alba Witkin Foundation and the profound impact they are making in the lives of eager children in the East Bay.
Empowering Children to Learn to Read So They May Read To Learn
The $10,000 grant from The Witkin Foundation is helping improve the reading skills of struggling second and third-grade students. Students who cannot read to learn by the third grade are at much greater risk of failing to reach their potential in school and eventually dropping out. Support from The Witkin Foundation enables a caring adult to provide personalized, one-on-one literacy tutoring and develop a trusted relationship. Having learned to read, students can now read to learn. Reading proficiently with understanding is the goal—resulting in kids becoming lifelong learners and productive citizens.
“Without a concerted effort to provide additional support, many Oakland children will grow more discouraged as they miss out on learning foundational reading and math skills. These are crucial skills needed to become confident, active learners as they move into fourth grade, fifth grade, and middle school,” says Jim Wambach, executive director of Children Rising.
Grant Supports Interventional Literacy Tutoring
In 1982, Bernard E. (“Bernie”) and Alba Witkin established the Bernard E. & Alba Witkin Charitable Trust with funding from royalties of Bernie’s legal writings and publications to support non-profit groups advancing social justice and society. The Foundation was created in 2003 to provide greater flexibility in carrying on the 1982 Trust’s mission. Currently, approximately 100 charitable organizations receive contributions from the Foundation each year. Funds from the grant will support volunteer recruitment, screening, and training; and provide learning supplies and program materials during the 2023-2024 academic year.
“Without a concerted effort to provide additional support, many Oakland children will grow more discouraged as they miss out on learning foundational reading and math skills.”
Children Rising’s evidence-based Succeeding by Reading interventional tutoring program delivers high-dosage tutoring through volunteer tutors to children in Oakland’s most underserved communities at no cost to their families. Children Rising recruits, trains, and supports over 140 volunteer tutors, including 80 new tutors this past school year. One caring adult can make a difference in a child’s life by providing one-on-one math tutoring for a young girl or boy.
“To accelerate learning and overcome the devastating learning loss caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, it is critical to increase the tutoring dosage levels within our tutoring programs. To execute this strategy, we must recruit and train 80% more tutors and hire additional staff for our literacy clinics,” Wambach said.
As always, Children Rising stands ready to enable eager-to-learn students to rise above the challenges in their neighborhoods with such a high concentration of poverty, violence, and educational inequity. Continued support from The Witkin Foundation is critical now, and we continue to be grateful for their ongoing support.
It’s not too late for YOU to be a tutor. Volunteer today, and you will give a child the one-on-one care they need to rise to their God-given potential.