Trent Green Family Foundation announces a five-year partnership with Phoenix Family to create the HIKE Reading Achievement Program

KANSAS CITY, Mo. (May 2, 2013) — More than 2,000 Kansas City-area children have a brighter hope for the future, thanks to a new literacy program established by the Trent Green Family Foundation. The HIKE Reading Achievement Program will provide expert instruction, academic support and educational resources to raise the reading level of every child in a Phoenix Family community.

?Trent and Julie Green unveiled the new program this evening at Phoenix Family’s 10th annual benefit dinner and awards ceremony at the Kansas City Convention Center. Phoenix Family provides critical services to more than 5,300 residents living in 32 communities in 12 cities throughout Kansas and Missouri.

?“For the Trent Green Family Foundation, nothing is more important than the future of Kansas City’s youth,” said Trent Green, chairman of the foundation. “And when we learned that children who can’t read proficiently by third grade are four times more likely to drop out of high school — and children from low-income families are six times more likely to drop out — we knew we had to do something. This will help instill the key to education.”

?Phoenix Family’s Executive Director Kimber Myers Givner explained that the most effective way of breaking the cycle of poverty is to increase the reading skills of children. “Kids who read at less-than-grade-level in elementary tend to never catch up. In fact, 100 percent of seventh graders at Phoenix Family communities read below their grade level. So we’re thrilled to partner with the Trent Green Family Foundation to hike the skills of Kansas City’s neediest children.”

?The goal of the HIKE Reading Achievement Program is to improve the reading proficiency of every child in a Phoenix Family community and, in turn, increase high school graduation rates. The program focuses on two key short-term goals: 1. Fifty percent of participants will improve their reading/language skills as measured through the iReady assessment and curriculum. ?2. Forty percent of participants will increase their fluency and automaticity as tested through reading comprehension tests, in order to increase their reading proficiency by at least one grade level over the course of the program.

The public is invited to be a part of the HIKE Reading Achievement Program in several ways. Green said that volunteers are needed to be reading coaches at the Phoenix Family sites, donations are needed to provide nine on-site reading specialists, and books are needed to help children foster their very own love of reading. “The whole purpose of the Trent Green Family Foundation is to help Kansas Citians ... help Kansas Citians.” Join the team by emailing info@trentgreenfamilyfoundation.org.

Since 1999, the Trent Green Family Foundation has donated millions of dollars to support and develop family-focused programs that improve the health and wellness, education, and the future of Kansas City kids in need.

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