United Way in Bath seeks volunteer readers

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BATH — United Way of Mid Coast Maine is seeking volunteer readers for its 16th annual “Community Read Aloud,” expected to reach more than 4,000 area children next month.

The March 2 reading, coordinated by United Way’s “Success by 6” initiative, will be held at child-care and Head Start centers, and in kindergarten through sixth-grade classrooms, from Brunswick to Waldoboro.

The event is part of Read Across America Day, which marks the birthday of children’s book writer Dr. Seuss.

“It is a fun opportunity to reinforce the importance of books and developing early literacy skills,” Peter Lindsay of United Way said in a Feb. 10 press release, which noted that participants are encouraged to bring one or several books to read, and to explain to the youths why they find reading important.

Volunteers can ask for sites in Brunswick, Harpswell, or Sagadahoc and Lincoln counties. They are particularly needed in Bowdoin, Richmond, Jefferson and Whitefield, according to United Way.

“Volunteering time in the classroom makes a profound statement about the importance of reading and early literacy,” Sagadahoc County Sheriff Joel Merry, who read to students at Fisher Mitchell School, said in the press release. “I challenged the students to use their imagination as I read several pages from ‘Angela’s Ashes.'”

Log onto United Way of Mid Coast Maine’s website, uwmcm.org, to sign up to read. Volunteers can also reach Becky Bohanan, the event coordinator, at beckyuwmcm@gmail.com or 443-9752.

Alex Lear can be reached at 781-3661 ext. 113 or alear@theforecaster.net. Follow him on Twitter: @learics.

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A Maine native and Colby College graduate, Alex has been covering coastal communities since 2001, and currently handles Bath, Topsham, Cumberland, and North Yarmouth. He and his wife, Lauren, live in the Portland area, and Alex recently released his third album of original music.