United Way Literacy Kits

Literacy and early learning are critical to ensuring kids in the Greater Richmond & Petersburg region are ready for kindergarten and reading at grade-level by third grade.

In order to be kindergarten-ready, young children need quality early childhood education, strong relationships with families, a safe and secure home environment and regular health and developmental screenings. Check out the data for all of these important indicators.

What’s more, kids who are reading proficiently by third grade are four times more likely to graduate high school on time. Learn more about the literacy scores in our region.

United Way is committed to helping young children in our region meet these crucial Steps to Success. Our year-round literacy kit efforts ensure students have access to materials they need to begin their educational journey on a positive, successful note.

Throughout the year, United Way of Greater Richmond & Petersburg collects and assembles more than 1,000 literacy kits that are distributed to students in our region. Each kit includes schools supplies, an age-appropriate book, information for parents and supplies for children to be prepared for kindergarten and reading at grade-level by third grade.

How to get involved:

  • Host a literacy kit drive. Bring together friends, neighbors or colleagues and host a literacy kit drive to maximize your efforts. Click here for ideas and tools to help get you started.
  • Become a Literacy Kit Leader. Any group donating 100 completed kits or $1,000 worth of supplies will be recognized as a Literacy Kit Leader. Click here to get more information.
  • Donate supplies. You can easily donate supplies to help this effort. Check out the Amazon Wishlist and the list of books to donate to see what supplies are needed.
  • Volunteer. United Way’s literacy kit work is a year-round effort. We are always recruiting volunteers to help with upcoming phases. Keep an eye on this page for announcements or email volunteer@yourunitedway.org to sign-up.

2019 Timeline

  • Spring – Literacy Kit Assembly. United Way welcomes large groups of volunteers to our office to help take donated supplies and assemble more than 1,000 literacy kits for students.
  • April – Literacy Kit Delivery. Volunteers load up their vehicles with assembled literacy kits and fan out to deliver kits to schools across the region.
  • April 11 – Kindergarten Registration Day. Students at select schools across the region receive literacy kits at Kindergarten Registration day.
  • Summer – Literacy Kit Kickoff. United Way volunteers spend a weekend at Walmart stores throughout our region collecting supplies for our literacy kits.
  • Fall – Literacy Kit Drives. United Way volunteers are collecting school supplies for their own drives that will be assembled into literacy kits.
News & Updates

December 2019 – We need books! Visit the Amazon Wishlist or the list of books to donate to see the books we need for our literacy kits.