30 minutes a week can make all of the difference.

Schools of Hope is making a difference in our community, and Schools of Hope volunteers are making a difference in the lives of children. The time spent with these children can literally make or break their future, because reading at grade level is a powerful predictor of future success in life.
— Kevin A. Konarska, Former Kent ISD Superintendent

High school graduation is a powerful predictor of a young person's future success, and research shows that students who don't read proficiently by the end of third grade are four times more likely to leave school without a diploma.

Every school year, we pair more than 400 Grand Rapids Public Schools students who are behind in reading with Volunteer Reading Tutors who work one-on-one with them for 30 minutes each week.

become a volunteer

Volunteer Reading Tutors are trained and matched to a student by our Volunteer Center staff. A typical tutoring session includes five minutes of vocabulary review, twenty minutes of reading, and a five minute activity. Many volunteers can fit a tutoring session in their lunch hour! Learn more about volunteering as an individual, with your coworkers, or adopting a school. 

It’s the highlight of my week! It’s a reminder that we are part of the bigger community, and we should be giving back.
— Lauri Atkinson, Schools of Hope volunteer

stuff the bus

Every fall, we collect elementary school supplies for children in the Schools of Hope Reading Program to make sure our students are starting the school year ready to lean. In 2015, we collected collected 11,596 items with a total value of $15,765! Check out photos of the collection and some of our generous volunteers!

Suggested Donations

  • 1” Three-Ring Binders
  • Highlighters
  • Spiral Notebooks
  • Index Cards
  • Pocket Folders
  • Glue Sticks
  • Lined Paper
  • Small Scissors
  • Pencils and Erasers
  • Small Pencil Sharpeners
  • Backpacks 
  • Pencil Boxes/Bags
  • Crayons 
  • Tissues
  • Colored Markers   
  • Hand Sanitizer
  • Colored Pencils
  • Antibacterial Wipes