Early Literacy2019-03-14T14:22:03+00:00
Reach Out and Read

About Our Early Literacy Initiative

The first five years of a child’s life offers a critical window for development and sets the stage for the rest of a child’s life. Early experiences irreversibly affect how the brain develops – for better or worse. Our Early Literacy Initiative utilizes Read Out and Read clinical intervention to promote parenting skills and positive parent-child relationships. We understand the social determinants of health, that children in low-income communities are particularly at risk and our two-generation approach aims to strengthen families and set children on a path of success in school and life.

Reach Out and Read Wisconsin was founded in December 2010 with support from American Family Children’s Hospital and Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin.

Reach Out and Read Wisconsin is a state affiliate of the national organization that gives young children a foundation for success by incorporating books into pediatric care and encouraging families to read aloud together.

Early Literacy Statistic

138,000 children and families in Wisconsin are served by Reach Out and Read each year.

Early Literacy Statistic

Reach Out and Read Wisconsin distributes more than 200,000 books each year.

Early Literacy Statistic

80% of brain growth happens before age 3.

Early Literacy Statistic

More than 200 clinics participate in Reach Out and Read Wisconsin.

What We Do

Reach Out and Read works in the space where health and education intersect: a young child’s medical checkup. Medical providers have almost universal access to children and provide a trusted voice in educating parents about the importance of talking, singing, reading and playing with their infants. Right from birth, babies are listening, looking and learning. Reading aloud provides a way for parents to engage with their youngest children and create positive conversational moments that will drive brain and language development.

Reach Out and Read Wisconsin

Reach Out and Read Wisconsin partners with the medical community to support clinicians in empowering parents as their child’s first and best teacher. Together, we work to build skills and capacities in parents to support their children in achieving their full potential.

Participating Clinics

Find management tools, best practice models, literacy resources and fundraising ideas.

View Resources

Interested Clinics

Reach Out and Read Wisconsin staff assist clinics through the application process, provide technical assistance and quality assurance support so clinics implement our evidence-based intervention with fidelity to the model – and make the greatest impact.


Reach Out and Read Wisconsin partners with clinics in more than 50 counties. Find a participating clinic near you.

Learn More

Support Reach Out and Read Wisconsin

Help us empower parents and bring the love of learning to another child. From organizing book drives to being a volunteer reader, there are many ways to get involved.

Contact Staff

Karin Mahony, MEd, MSW
Project Manager
Reach Out and Read Wisconsin
(608) 442-4160

Amber Bloom, MSW
Project Coordinator
Reach Out and Read Wisconsin
(414) 337-4566

Alexandria Rogers
Project Coordinator
Reach Out and Read Wisconsin
(608) 442-4175

Reach Out and Read Wisconsin News

Share Your Heart

October 21st, 2019|Reach Out and Read|

Heart of Canal Street is Potawatomi Hotel & Casino’s signature community program, and this year’s campaign is underway. Half of each $3 or $7 Canal Street Bingo game purchased goes [...]

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