This Week at READ USA

Peace In The Pages

Peace In The Pages is This Friday! Join us virtually.

  • Read USA Inc.
  • October 5 2022

Presented by Steve & Diane Halverson

Friday, October 7, 2022

11:30 a.m. – 1:00 p.m. 

TIAA Bank Field

We are on the edge of our seats in anticipation for our annual Peace In The Pages event this Friday! We have so many exciting updates to share with our supporters and we cannot wait to see you either in-person or virtually.

To join us virtually this Friday, please click this link before the event start time at 11:30 a.m.

THANK YOU to our generous Presenting Sponsors, Steve & Diane Halverson, whose donation has underwritten the entirety of our annual event. Steve & Diane have been ardent supporters of READ USA for years and we could not be more thankful for their ongoing support of our important work to close the literacy gap in Duval County and beyond.

Attendance to Peace in the Pages is currently reserved for our generous donors who support READ USA at $1,000 a year or more and their guests. Click here to donate now and join the guest list for next year’s event!


2021 Peace In The Pages:



READ USA Receives $500,000 from United Way of Northeast Florida

READ USA is honored to be the recipient of a $500,000 grant from United Way of Northeast Florida to increase opportunities for stable employment in our community. With a focus on career readiness, job training and workforce development, the two-year, $250,000-per-year grant will expand workforce development within READ USA’s Literacy Tutoring Program. We are so grateful for United Way’s support and their public recognition of how our Literacy Tutoring Program is making a difference in the lives of our local teenagers by preparing them for future careers!

READ USA’s Literacy Tutoring Program pairs elementary students with teenage tutors who teach the younger students to improve their reading skills. READ USA pays our teen tutors a living wage and provides transportation and other supports to give them real-world employment experience, ultimately helping prepare them for a future career in education or other fields.

The United Way grant will enable READ USA to hire more teen tutors and provide supportive, wrap-around tutoring services at a local Duval County Public Schools elementary school for two years. As part of this, READ USA will hire a full-time tutor coordinator supervisor who will work with tutor coordinators – the individuals who help guide and support our teen tutors – to provide tutors with workforce development skills, such as financial literacy, career mentoring services, and other important areas. Our teen tutoring program is already making a difference in the lives of our elementary students and our teen tutors, and United Way is making it possible to grow this impact even more.

Our tremendous gratitude goes to United Way of Northeast Florida for awarding READ USA this impactful grant, and we are also thankful for the letters of support we received from LIFT JAX’s President David Garfunkel and David Miller and for our application.



Literacy Locker Rooms Are in Full Swing!

During the past couple weeks, READ USA has conducted two Literacy Locker Room events at local elementary schools, distributing free books to children as part of our partnership with the Jacksonville Jaguars Foundation. During the book distribution events, Jacksonville Jaguars players also read with the children, providing a whole new level of excitement for these budding young minds.

Many thanks to our partners and sponsors who made these events possible – just look at the excitement on these children’s faces!

Normandy Village Elementary, sponsored by Whataburger
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John Love Early Learning Center, sponsored by Gallagher Insurance


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We are also grateful for TIAA Bank for helping make Literacy Locker Rooms possible. For every touchdown the Jacksonville Jaguars score this season, TIAA Bank will donate 100 books to READ USA, which are distributed during the Literacy Locker Room events. Thank you, TIAA Bank, for our “Touchdowns for Tomorrow” partnership!  

We have more events scheduled in the coming months, so stay tuned for more!

Also, in case you missed it, click below to watch Dr. Rob Kelly speak about “Touchdowns for Tomorrow” on News4Jax:




by Alda P. Dobbs

Children’s Book: Barefoot Dreams

An intimate look into the suffering brought forth by the Mexican Revolution, Barefoot Dreams is a story of triumph. As Petra shuffles through the trials of the time, she is battered, yet resilient. After Petra’s mother dies and her father is torn from the family by soldiers, she pledges to care for her Abuelita, little sister Amelia, and baby brother Luisito.

Before long, her family is rushing to cross the U.S. border, seeking refuge and safety. Petra dreams of being able to read, a feat her grandmother believes is not important. “Abuelita calls these barefoot dreams: “They're like us barefoot peasants and indios—they're not meant to go far.” But Petra refuses to listen. 

Chasing her American dreams, Petra moves through frontlines, wastelands, fear, hunger, and peril to the United States. There, her dreams can sit comfortably in a strong and supported foundation. They can even forge an unknown path to success.

Submitted by Tabetha Cox, Tutoring Program Director




Education Corner: Mindset

In her book, Mindset, Stanford University psychologist, Carol Dweck, shares her insights based on decades of research about success. Her discovery of the power of our mindset has caused quite a stir in education, athletics, business leadership and many other arenas of the world. Ms. Dweck writes that it is not just our abilities or talents that impact our achievements. She explains that with the right mindset, we can motivate our kids and help them to improve in reaching their goals both personally and professionally. Her words also speak to our thoughts and behaviors as adults. She shares how a simple idea about the brain can create a love of learning that is the basis of great accomplishment in every area. This powerful text will motivate and inspire.


To learn more about how to establish a growth mindset, check out this book!

Points to ponder about mindset: 

  1. Think about your hero. Do you think of this person as one with extraordinary abilities who achieved with little effort? Now go find the truth. Find out the tremendous effort that went into their accomplishment – and admire them more.

  2. Athletes with a growth mindset find success in learning and improving, not just winning. The more you can do this, the more rewarding spirts will be for you – and for those who play them with you!