10 years of creating a community of readers, one lunch hour at a time.

Our Mission

To support the social, emotional and reading skills that are foundational for student success by mobilizing community volunteers to read with students in elementary schools.
Why? Fewer than half of Kansas City, Missouri third graders are reading on grade level. In many high-need schools, it’s fewer than 25 percent. Children who are not reading by third grade are four times more likely to drop out of high school. Lead to Read KC is addressing this challenge. Learn more >
Watch this short video to learn more about Lead to Read KC's mission and the impact of our program — and how easy it is to get involved!

What We Do

  1. Recruit mentors icon
    Provide reading and mentoring support to K-3 students attending high-need schools.
  2. School icon
    Provide individualized tutoring by certified teachers.
  3. GitHub icon
    Distribute books — and provide social-emotional support via author partnerships.

What's New

Read Our Latest Newsletter

Volunteer Opportunities

Students need reading and mentoring support now more than ever. Not on our current volunteer roster? There’s still time to join! We will be serving at least 100 additional students during the second semester.

Check out our reading session schedule. If you’ve been a Reading Mentor in a prior school year, simply email Volunteer Manager Hayley Rees at volunteer@leadtoreadkc.org to indicate your interest. No need to reapply! New to our program? It’s easy to apply online.

Follow us on social media for program updates: Facebook, Instagram and LinkedIn. And, watch for email updates!

We’re Hiring

Looking for a meaningful part-time opportunity, or know someone who is? We’re hiring part-time Program Coordinators to coordinate volunteers, students and teachers to ensure our reading and tutoring sessions are positive, meaningful experiences. Program Coordinators may serve in person at schools or virtually, and provide light technology support to students and volunteers. Lead to Read KC will provide training.

Seeking very enthusiastic, flexible candidates! Starting at $15 per hour for 8-20 hours a week, usually mid-day. Total hours vary based on personal availability.

Interested, or have questions? Please contact Program Manager Allison White: allison@leadtoreadkc.org.

New Ways To Get Books Into Children’s Lives

Check out this news story from Kelly Eckerman of KMBC 9 News about how Lead to Read KC is expanding our book distribution channels to get even more books into the hands of Kansas City children through our Reading Is Everywhere(SM) initiative. Learn more. Make a donation to support this initiative.

Read for 15 Kick Off

Lead to Read KC partnered with the 15 and Mahomies Foundation, The Rotary Club of Overland Park and the Kansas City Chiefs Ambassadors to kick off the Read for 15 program with our partner schools on Oct. 28. Watch this KMBC 9 News story to learn more.

Our Reach: 2019-20


classrooms served


hours of one-to-one reading support and mentorship provided


schools served


books distributed


students paired with a reading mentor
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