Experience Corps dba AARP Experience Corps
Experience Corps, a 501 ? (3) organization affiliated with AARP, is proposing to implement a Retired and Senior Volunteer Program (RSVP) in Chicago, Illinois (Illinois Opportunity #2R) beginning July 1, 2013. Experience Corps's Chicago RSVP Program will recruit, train, and place 500 (80% of target provided by CNCS) unduplicated volunteers, who are 55 and older, by the third year of program operations. Building on its evidence-based model and expertise in engaging older adult volunteers, Experience Corps will address the Primary Focus Area of Education to improve educational outcomes for economically disadvantaged children. There is consensus across the education community that it is critically important for children to read at grade level by the end of third grade. Research has demonstrated the correlation between a student's reading ability at this juncture and his or her subsequent academic success. On the 2011 National Assessment of Educational Progress reading exam, 82 percent of 4th graders in Chicago were not reading at the "proficient" level and 52 percent were reading at the "below basic" level. On the Reading portion of the Illinois Standards Achievement Test (ISAT), 38 percent of 3rd graders fell below the standard. To meet this need, by the end of year three, 500 unduplicated RSVP volunteers will serve as follows: 425 will serve directly in schools (volunteer stations) providing literacy tutoring and mentoring to 6,375 students. These volunteers will provide over 102,000 hours of service to the community. Of the students being served in year three, 6,375 (100%) will complete the program, and 3,825 (60%) of students will have improved academic performance in literacy. 25 volunteers will serve in capacity building roles, helping to recruit and manage volunteers. 50 volunteers will serve at volunteer stations meeting other community needs. Over a three year period, RSVP volunteers will serve approximately 13,830 K-3 students in the Chicago Public Schools, meeting a critical community need of improving students' academic performance in literacy while strengthening school communities through the presence of caring, well-trained, older adult volunteers.