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Make A Difference Day 2019

United Way is continuously striving to create innovaive programs and partnerships to empower everyone with the knowledge and skills required to reach their full potential, to contribute to future generations, and to become involved members of a global community. 

Join us on our mission to raise awareness about ways to prevent "Summer Slide" and to advocate for quality education for every child throughout Olmsted County at Make A Difference Day, on Wednesday, June 26th 2019, during Rochesterfest. Make A Difference Day is an opportunity co-hosted in partnership with KTTC that has developed a unique model to help underserved communities and their needs throughout Olmsted County.

This year, United Way will be focusing our attention around Youth Success and the partners and programs that help to prevent the "Summer Slide". Wednesday is Family Day at Rochesterfest and what better way to celebrate than to get involved in our community and volunteer in activities that help students succeed year-round. United Way is inviting agencies around Olmsted County to offer volunteer opportunities for individuals, families, groups and organizations centered around Youth Success. We invite you to volunteer with us, connect with us, or donate! Please visit Get Connected for volunteer opportunities now!


We will also be recognizing 5 outstanding companies and organizations that are going above and beyond by providing their time, talents, treasure, and resources to ensure success for all children and youth in Olmsted County!

If you know of a deserving company or organization, nominate them here!



Helping to prevent the “Summer Slide”

It’s not uncommon to hear children complain about having to go to school. However, in many parts of the world—there are children who would give anything to sit in a classroom with a teacher who cares about their futures where they are surrounded by desks, chairs, books, and computers. This scenario represents a quality education, which is the single most important gateway to these children’s economic prosperity. Building equity in these communities starts with these children.

To succeed in school and life, children and young adults need ongoing opportunities to learn and practice essential skills. This is especially true during the summer months.

According to Reading is Fundamental, low-income children and youth experience greater summer learning losses than their higher-income peers. On average, middle-income students experience slight gains in reading performance over the summer months. Low-income students experience an average summer learning loss in reading achievement of more than 2 months.

Summer learning loss contributes to the achievement gap in reading performance between lower- and higher-income children and youth. Research demonstrates that while student achievement for both middle- and lower-income students improves at similar rates during the school year, low-income students experience cumulative summer learning losses over the elementary school grades.

Learn more here.