Local shooting club aims to improve literacy

| 19/01/2016
Cayman News Service

Vinnette Glidden (second from left) of I Read For Life receives donation from Eddie McLean of the Sport Shooting Association and fellow members (from left) Jayse Wilson and Michaela Pultr

(CNS): The Cayman Islands Sport Shooting Association (CISSA) used its annual Christmas fundraising effort to support local tutoring centre, I Read for Life (IRFL), donating CI$2,375 towards the organisation’s scholarship fund. For the past two years the CISSA membership has focused on contributing to causes within the community including toy drives and fundraising events for those with health concerns.

To end 2015, the association decided to donate to a cause that would have a lasting and meaningful impact on the lives of the children in the community and so during its annual Christmas social CISSA members made private donations to the scholarship fund.

The IRFL scholarship assists families that have children who need help with reading but cannot completely afford the services on their own. Local speech and language pathologist Vinnette Glidden developed the reading method used at IRFL and this has been privately taught in Cayman for more than 20 years. The programme breaks down the English language into 44 sounds and focuses primarily on the combination of letters that make each of the sounds. Lessons are reinforced with games, songs, videos and workbook activities.

After presenting the funds, CISSA representatives were given an in-depth explanation of the reading programme and a tour of the IRFL facilities. Glidden addressed the importance of literacy as well as her passion for helping children, referring to local statistics that show 42.6 percent of year 6 primary students are reading below expectations and, of those, 17.7 percent were reading three or more years below expectations.

“If you can’t read by fourth grade, and can’t afford to get help, chances are that you will head down the wrong path,” she said. “On that basis, I am very happy that CISSA is making this contribution towards improving the literacy of our children.”

In 2014, IRFL itself provided CI$62,000 worth of unfunded services to children whose families could not afford the help they needed. This was in addition to donations made by individuals and businesses in the community.

Eddie McLean, CISSA president, in commending Glidden and the IRFL team for their work, said that he “only wished the cheque was for a larger amount so that more children could benefit from this programme”.

To learn more about I Read For Life, visit its website

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Category: Donations, Education, Scholarships

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