Real Men Read volunteers provide a positive male role model to 2nd and 3rd grade students by making five visits to the classroom throughout the school year. On each visit, the volunteer will read a single picture book to his class to engage the students’ interest in reading.

Up until third grade, students are still learning to read. After third grade, they start reading to learn. This makes the years before fourth grade crucial to developing a child’s love for reading and basic literacy skills! Real Men Readers engage students by asking fun questions about each book (provided to volunteers!) and enforces the importance of reading.

Right now, it’s more important than ever before to foster a love of reading. In 2021, only 24.9% of Fort Wayne Community Schools students tested as proficient in the ILEARN English and Language Arts test. Problems with literacy will follow a child for his entire life. Statistics from the National Institute for Literacy, National Center for Adult Literacy, The Literacy Company, and the U.S. Census Bureau show that 85% of juvenile offenders have trouble reading, with only one-third of America’s fourth graders reaching basic proficiency levels.

Real Men Read is designed to combat that problem by giving children a special, interactive experience that makes reading fun — without the stress of grading or testing attached. 89% of teachers agree that Real Men Read is a valuable program to help students develop literacy skills. In the process of RMR, Big Brothers Big Sisters provides its readers with five picture books and a set of fun, engaging questions to ask the class. At the end of each session, the classrooms receive their own copy of the book so children can reread it whenever they want.

This year’s Real Men Read dates are:


Volunteers must submit to a background check and provide Big Brothers Big Sisters with a copy of their driver’s license. To apply, fill out the application today!

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