Summer reading and nutrition program needs mentors, coordinators

Reading and comprehension skills are critical to success in today’s fast-paced world, according to officials with Energy Express, a summer reading and nutrition program offered by WVU Extension Service and AmeriCorps and which helps to ensure West Virginia’s youths keep up with those much-needed skills, particularly during the summer months.

Energy Express, an eight-week reading and nutrition program offered in rural and low-income West Virginia communities, helps children entering first through sixth grade overcome the ‘summer slide’ that occurs when youth fall behind academically during the summers in between school years, according to Andrea Price, WVU Extension Service 4-H Energy Express program director.

“In 2018, more than 3,000 children in 40 West Virginia counties participated in the program, and we need dedicated mentors and volunteers to help make this program a success,” Price said.

Energy Express is seeking West Virginians 18 years or older to apply for paid positions as AmeriCorps members to serve as mentors and community coordinators. AmeriCorps members receive a living allowance, education award and community service hours.

Applicants interested in serving through AmeriCorps as mentors or community coordinators must be 18 years of age by June 7 to apply.

Position descriptions and applications may be found on the Energy Express website. The selection process begins March 1 and applications will be accepted until all positions are filled.

Energy Express is a program under the leadership of WVU Extension Service’s 4-H Youth Development program.

The AmeriCorps program is funded, in part, by grants from private foundations and corporations and Volunteer West Virginia, the state’s commission for national and community service.

For information, contact Tara Curtis, WVU Extension Service, at (304) 293-7996;; or follow at WVUToday on Twitter.