West Virginia University Extension’s award-winning youth literacy program, Energy Express, returns this summer for another year of educational programming for West Virginia youths.
Energy Express is a free six-week program that focuses on literacy and nutrition-based education and activities. There will be 58 sites statewide, focused in West Virginia’s rural and low-income communities. Children entering first through sixth grade are eligible to enroll.
Youths engage in art, STEM, literacy, recreational and other activities that help to bridge the learning gap that happens during the summer. Last year, more than 1,000 children across West Virginia participated in the program, with 75% of those maintaining or increasing their reading achievement scores.
In addition, more than 30,000 take-home books were given to participants, and 45,000 healthy meals were served to children in the communities.
Energy Express is made possible by the partnership it maintains with AmeriCorps. Members serve as caring mentors and community coordinators during the program to help site supervisors and other volunteers create a meaningful experience for the children.
“Energy Express lets them not only build their reading and writing skills, but it also gives them a bond with other kids that they may not have had in a classroom setting,” said Delcie McCord, a third-year AmeriCorps volunteer in Lewis County. “It lets them take their imagination and put it on paper or into a project, whereas in a regular school setting they may not have time to explore that.”
Energy Express will run from June 20 to July 29, 2022; however, June 20 is West Virginia Day, so some sites may delay the start date.
Many county WVU Extension offices send and collect registration forms through local schools. Applications will be accepted through the end of the school year or until all spots are filled.
To find the nearest Energy Express site to you or to register your child, please contact your local WVU Extension office. For more information on the program, visit energyexpress.wvu.edu.
If you want to learn about WVU Extension, visit extension.wvu.edu or follow @WVUExtension on Facebook, YouTube, Twitter and Instagram.
CONTACT: Sydney Keener