A new partnership aims to expand a youth reading program across the state of Wisconsin.
The Children’s hospitals in Madison and Milwaukee are joining forces to expand the “Reach Out and Read” program across the state. UW Hospital and Clinics President Donna Katen-Bahensky says the effort will make free books available to thousands of pre-school aged children.
An estimated 96-percent of children in that age group visit the doctor at least once a year. Katen-Bahensky says that means doctors can fill a vital role in educating parents about the importance of reading to their kids at a young age, which research has shown helps to prepare them when they enter school later in life.
Katen-Bahensky says parents who receive books through the program are more likely to read to their kids.
The “Reach Out and Read” initiative is being named in honor of the outgoing Governor and First Lady. It will be known as “The Jim and Jessica Doyle Partnership: Promoting Health Kids and Early Learning in Wisconsin.”
At a ceremony in Madison earlier this week, Jessica Doyle said she is thrilled to have any part of the statewide effort on youth literacy.
The program will make books available at over 50 hospitals and clinics across the state.