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Cool Schools: "Real Men Read" to Goshen elementary students

GOSHEN, Ind.-A half hour of these Goshen elementary school students’ day is being taken over by men.

Construction workers, lawyers, police officers and even the Mayor are picking up books, turning the pages and telling stories to kids in grades first through fourth. It’s all part of a program called “Real Men Read.”

“A lot of our children are from single parent families, dads work a lot of hours or they just don’t have a lot of male role models,” said Michelle Kercher, Coordinator of Volunteers for Goshen Community Schools. “We felt that this was a positive way to get our community members into our school.”

Funded and supported by the United Way of Elkhart County, “Real Men Read” started in 2011. Every week for an entire month, nearly 100 men volunteer to read books and chat about their careers.

“We always tell the guys at the orientation that you’ll feel like a rockstar when you come in,” Kercher said.

“I think it’s fantastic,” said Goshen Mayor Jeremy Stutsman. “Anytime that we can get adults and parents in the schools, I think it’s great for the kids.”

Whether it’s a fictional tale or their own personal story, Kercher says it may be a short visit, but that’s all it takes for these men to make a difference in these little one’s lives.

The program started this week in all 7 of Goshen’s Elementary Schools. It will run until November 17th.

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