IMPACT - Kindergarten Readiness

United we fight for all kids in our community to reach their full potential.

Kate noticed her son Teddy wasn’t speaking like he should be around his second birthday. With support from her pediatrician she called Developmental Services Center, a United Way partner, and Teddy was enrolled in speech services.

After his third birthday, Teddy was able to enroll in his school district’s Special Education Program. “I just felt a flood of relief and hope that he would be in a program that gave him the boost that he needed to have a good education,” she said.


Walk as One for Kindergarten Readiness

Read. Talk. Play. Every Day!

That's the message over one hundred volunteers shared with Champaign and Urbana families on Tuesday, September 13. United Way, with CU Cradle 2 Career and the Champaign Community Coalition, hosted a Walk As One event focused on increasing kindergarten readiness. United Way estimates that 30% of kids are not fully prepared on the first day of Kindergarten.


Read a Book with your Child Today!

Today, August 9th, we celebrate National Book Lover’s Day! This day is all about sitting down with a well-loved classic or choosing something new from your bookshelf and taking the time to immerse yourself in a story.

Remember, don’t just celebrate National Book Lover’s Day by yourself! Use this day to create new book lovers by reading with your children, grandchildren, and other kids in your life!


Our Education Goal: Kindergarten Readiness for All

The first five years of a child’s life encompass nearly 90% of brain development! Starting early in these important and exciting years, parents have the power to set their kids up for success in their short and long term futures. During this time, parents can promote language and literacy by reading together every day and providing their children access to their choice of books.


June Book List - Fantasy

June’s theme is FANTASY! These books have inspired the imaginations of readers and introduced them to magic, strange creatures and coincidences, and far-off places. In some cases, like Matilda or Harold, magic can sneak into an ordinary life. Some characters spend their lives in a fantasy world. Either way, these tales explore the everyday in an extraordinary way. That’s why fantasy is such a fun—and enormous—genre to get into!

Board Books (Pre-K)


April Book List - Poetry

April’s theme is POETRY! Rhyming is an amazing tool to assist young readers with difficult words and spelling, yet according to Dr. Seuss, a pioneer in introducing poetry into children’s books, “The problem with writing a book in verse is, to be successful, it has to sound like you knocked it off on a rainy Friday afternoon. It has to sound easy.” As we get older, poems become a complex, expressive art form, and they can say a lot about ourselves and our culture.


March Book List - Classics

March brings a list of CLASSICS. (Or maybe they’re just classic tales to our millennial intern!) Each generation has a collection of books they hold dear, and these are only a few books that have won numerous awards and shaped our culture. What books have you wanted to share with others because you have fond memories with an old copy? What books caused you to feel differently, or to stop and think about something important? Those are the classic books we’d love to hear about!


January Book List - Series


January is all about SERIES of books! These well-loved franchises can make a lasting impact on our lives, whether we grew up reading them or watch our children enjoy them. Reluctant readers might find their Golden Ticket to a more enjoyable reading experience if they identify with a character that they want to follow. It’s a one-of-a-kind opportunity to be able to grow up with a cast of characters!


December Book List - Giving

It’s the season of giving, and December’s theme is GIVING! Whether or not your family chooses to celebrate the holidays, it’s a good time to think about other families in need and what you can do to help them through the colder months. Here are some books that remind us of the power of giving and volunteering, and the importance of caring for others.