All Ages Read Together
1. What is your mission and vision?
AART Mission – to educate children in need with free preschool programs in their communities.
AART Vision – We envision a future where public education means universal access to preschool, making the need for AART obsolete.
2. How does your organization achieve its mission?
AART currently offers 12 classes in Fairfax and Loudoun Counties serving four and five year olds who would otherwise begin kindergarten without any exposure to preschool. These class sites are chosen for their accessibility for the families we serve, so they are in communities near their homes.
Experienced teachers and volunteers of all ages provide individualized school readiness classes to prepare children for success in kindergarten and beyond.
3. How have your programs directly impacted the regional community?
Approximately 19% of children in Fairfax and Loudoun Counties begin kindergarten every year without the benefit of a preschool education. AART exists to help fill that gap.
Each year AART positively impacts the regional community with:
180 students educated;
6,000 hours of volunteer time donated; and
4,440 books put in the hands of AART students.
Evaluations from the 2016-2017 school year show the following improvements:
51% improvement in early literacy skills;
48% improvement in speech and language skills;
31% improvement in cognitive skills;
55% improvement in fine motor skills; and
22% improvement in social skills.
4. What inspires or drives your team to stay committed to your mission?
When we observe the “firsts” that each child achieves in class coupled with the excitement and eagerness to learn, we are energized as a team.
The first time they…
write their name;
share thoughts at circle;
use a complete English sentence;
recognize and read a word;
make a new friend;
complete a craft project and on and on…
5. What advice would you give to other nonprofits trying to make an impact in their community?
Universally, our advice would be to deeply understand and connect with the communities in which they serve. Build on the strengths of the families on a cultural level, on an economic level, and on a personal level.