YMCA Reads!

YMCA Reads!As of 2019, 44% of third grade students in Pinellas County are reading below grade level according to the Florida State Assessment (FSA). Unfortunately, students struggling to read in third grade rarely catch up – one in six students who are not proficient by that point fail to graduate high school on time, a rate four times higher than stronger readers.

YMCA Reads! provides kindergarten through third grade students with the intensive reading instruction they need to succeed. Students are referred by teachers to work with YMCA staff and mentors in small groups during two one-hour individualized sessions per week.

We continuously measure reading skills using both i-Ready Diagnostic tests and informal assessments to provide targeted instruction and track the results of the program. Overall, 98% of students in the program see quantifiable progress in their reading skills and progress to the next grade level!

Data based on Florida Standards Assessments from the Florida Department of Education (Source)


School Locations

The YMCA Reads! program is open to students of the host school only.

Perkins Elementary

2205 18th Ave. South
St. Petersburg, FL 33712

Ryanne Rubin
727.895.9622, ext. 2210

YMCA Reads! Coordinator

Douglas L. Jamerson Elementary

1200 37th St. South
St. Petersburg, FL 33711

Shavon Gibson
727.895.9622, ext. 2206

YMCA Reads! Coordinator

Sawgrass Lake Elementary

1815 77th Ave. North
St. Petersburg, FL 33702

Kim Lohrey
727.895.9622, ext. 1304

YMCA Reads! Coordinator


YMCA Staff

Director of Literacy

Shiloh Capone
727.895.9622 x2209



By volunteering two hours each week, you can teach a child to read. As a YMCA Reads! mentor, you will work in a small group environment or one-on-one with kindergarten through third grade students, developing positive self-esteem and helping students improve their academic performance. Be a child's tutor and friend, and help give them the keys to a brighter future.

YMCA Reads!

Volunteers must be at least 16 years old and complete an online application, on-boarding and pass background checks and fingerprinting. All necessary training is provided. Join us - we wouldn't be able to accelerate student success without the help of our amazing volunteers!