KEYS members read to almost 1,000 local second graders during RAKC

Members of Kosciusko Endowment Youth Services (KEYS), the Kosciusko County Community Foundation’s youth philanthropy program, encouraged literacy among nearly 1,000 second graders during Read Across Kosciusko County (RAKC) this week. This year marks the 19th anniversary of the program.

“Read Across Kosciusko County is a great way for KEYS members to practice their mission to impact education,” said Terrill Hooks, program officer at the Community Foundation. “In addition to encouraging the vital skill of reading, this program helps KEYS members be better grant-makers as they interact with students who are impacted by the educational grants they award.”

During RAKC, 20 KEYS members, aided by more than 30 adult volunteers, travelled to 16 elementary schools throughout Kosciusko County. They read Can I Be Your Dog? by Troy Cummings to each classroom of second graders. Every classroom received a copy of the book to keep, and each child received a different book, Rise of the Balloon Goons, also by Troy Cummings, to take home.

Later this spring, Cummings will visit each classroom in-person to sign books, answer questions and craft an original story with the students.

Since 1995, KEYS students representing Lakeland Christian Academy, Tippecanoe Valley, Warsaw, and Wawasee schools have worked together to positively impact and improve education in our community. As a grant-making body, they recommend over $20,000 in grants to educators and nonprofits each year.

While in the program, KEYS members learn about philanthropy, teamwork, nonprofit governance, leadership, and service to their community. Their mission is “to work together to positively impact and improve education in our community by providing aid now and for future generations.”

Curious about KEYS?

Learn more about our one-of-a-kind youth philanthropy program!