1. How long have you volunteered with The READ Center?
I began volunteering at the READ Center on November 1st, 2018.
2. What is your current volunteer role? (i.e. tutor in class, admin support, etc.)
I’m a classroom tutor on Thursday nights from 6:30-8:30 PM in Ms. Leslie Harper’s class.
3. What motivates you to work with READ?
What motivates me to give back is the chance to help multiple students develop fundamental skills that I’ve frankly taken for granted over so many years. The READ Center’s motto states “Everyone needs and deserves a literate life”, and I couldn’t agree more because reading, writing, and mathematics skills are what help us all move up in life. To sit alongside students regardless of age, ethnicity, or background and guide them in the right direction towards a more fruitful future is why I’m involved because their journeys mean as much to me as their goals.
4. Do you have a favorite memory of volunteering with READ?
I normally work with the same 2-3 students mainly because I’ve grown fond of them, especially Daquane. Personally, I enjoy listening to people speak about their dreams and aspirations because it gives me insight into who they are and who they’d like to become. Daquane and I are both ambitious people, so we share our goals with each other and I know what he plans to achieve. He talks about earning his driver’s license, buying himself a Hummer, and going to college where the weather is warm like Florida State University. He explained all of this to me during one of our first interactions last year, and although he changes his mind about which university he’d like to attend sometimes it’s obvious he wants to be at READ and learn. My favorite memory was establishing my friendship with Daquane almost immediately, and to this day it’s a big reason why I keep coming back to volunteer.
5. If you could encourage someone else to volunteer with READ, what would you say?
If you think you have the patience, the selflessness, and the dedication to watch someone you barely know grasp skills they deserve to have then volunteering with the READ Center is right for you. Focus on helping the students push themselves and you’ll realize this experience may be one of the most meaningful things you’ve done to give back.
Thank you, Srikar, for volunteering and spending your time with The READ Center.
If you or someone you know is looking to volunteer with READ, please visit our website for more information.