Trinity College Volunteers Work with United Way to Make Literacy Kits for Local Students

Students, Staff, and Faculty Support Schools in Greater Hartford Community

​Hartford, Connecticut, November 7, 2016 – The Trinity College United Way Campaign recently brought members of the Trinity community together to make literacy kits for local organizations and schools. This common hour event on Tuesday, October 25, was held in Mather Hall’s Alumni Lounge, serving as an opportunity for students, staff, and faculty to give back to the Greater Hartford community.

Participants were encouraged to design props, hats, masks, puppets, games, or other activities to make reading more interactive and enjoyable for pre-school and elementary students. The dual purpose of the literacy kit-making event was to inspire creativity among volunteers and to bring books to life to deepen children’s reading experience. Laura Whittemore, director of Trinity’s Student Activities, Involvement, and Leadership (S.A.I.L.) Office and a member of Trinity’s Exempt Staff Council, which helped organize the event, said, “I can relate to the experience of wanting to bring a better education to students, and it’s great to bring this same awareness to college students.”

The United Way of Central and Northeastern Connecticut is headquartered in Hartford, and it helps people in 40 towns across central and northeastern Connecticut by investing in various programs and initiatives. The United Way assists Asset Limited, Income Constrained, Employed (ALICE) families, a newly-coined demographic term representing one in three working families in the Greater Hartford region who struggle to make ends meet every day.

“United Way focuses on agencies that care about quality pre-school education and literacy abilities,” said United Way Donor Relations Manager David Taylor. “A child’s ability to read on grade level by the fourth grade is a good predictor of if they will graduate on time. The typical 5- to 9-year-old kid in a suburban area has access to books wherever they want; they practically have their own libraries in their homes. Urban kids typically only have access to books in school.”

The United Way of Central and Northeastern Connecticut is one of 1,200 autonomous United Ways in the nation. Since 1924, The United Way has raised $900 million dollars to help people in the greater Hartford community. 

For more information on the Trinity United Way Campaign or to make your pledge today, please contact Community Relations Manager Julia Rivera at

Written by Catie Currie ’17

Photos by Andrew J. Concatelli