The Salt Lake Community donated 108 hours of time and over 8,000 books to help students find the fun in reading


Tuesday, March 2nd, was Read Across America Day 2021. 12 schools across the Wasatch Front celebrated by participating in activities designed to build a passion for reading and literacy.

United Way of Salt Lake partnered with schools to (virtually) place 54 volunteers in classrooms across Granite, Davis, and Canyons school districts. These volunteers facilitated literacy-themed activities such as reading books to kindergarteners, playing games rooted in literacy lessons, and leading arts & crafts.

In addition to the live reading sessions, Sandy Elementary School showed pre-recorded videos of Real Salt Lake players reading to the students in English and Spanish.


Watch the complete collection of Real Salt Lake players reading here >


During this year’s event, volunteers donated more than 108 hours of their time to three virtual reading projects and more than $7,500 worth of books to UWSL community schools. In total, more than 8,000 books have been purchased for local schools.

A special thank you to Bank of America for their donation to this project, which allowed us to purchase all of the books on teacher's wishlists. We appreciate their contribution to reading and literacy.

The national event, now in its 23rd year, is designed to encourage students to find the fun in reading. This message is especially important at Title 1 elementary schools where 70-90 percent of students receive free or reduced-cost lunch and nearly all face economic or language barriers, creating additional academic challenges for them to overcome.

Schools that participated are all United Way of Salt Lake Community Schools that are part of collaborative partnerships with Canyons School District, Granite School District, Davis School District, and dozens of nonprofit organizations. Community Schools serve as a resource for students, families, and the broader community, creating a web of support focused on improving academic outcomes for students in our community.


Keep the joy of reading going throughout the year. Choose books from our list of staff recommendations or our list of books that celebrate diversity


By Zeynep Kariparduc, Volunteer Programs Coordinator at United Way of Salt Lake