Freedom School at Monroe Street UMC

Freedom School 2018

A Freedom School is a six-week Monday through Friday reading and enrichment program developed by the Children’s Defense Fund in 1995 which has a proven track record for increasing reading levels from 1.4 to 2.2 grade levels over two to three summers that children participate in the Freedom School. Freedom Schools were birthed as a vision to end what is known as the “cradle to prison pipeline.”  We know there is a direct correlation between third grade reading test scores and incarceration in adulthood for at-risk, poverty and lower income children in our urban areas.  


June 17 - July 26
Sixty children from the Toledo community and the neighborhood around the Monroe Street UMC will participate in the 2019 Freedom School. This is the districts 3rd year in partnership with the Monroe Street Neighborhood Center to be a part of Freedom School. We need your presence to help prepare and serve breakfast and lunch. This year, we will hire a chef who will work with the churches in all the meals. We need:

  • Breakfast volunteers, time will be from 7- 9am and includes both cleanup and participation with the children in Harambee in order to truly build relationships,
  • Lunch volunteers, lunch served at 12 noon with prep beforehand then lunch teams will sit at the table with the children, have conversations and build relationships. Clean up will follow after.
  • Chaperones for field trips,
  • Volunteers to check in each morning and check out each afternoon,
  • Volunteers to listen and help children learn to read,
  • Monetary donations - a $1,000 gift will send a child to Freedom School for six weeks from 8am-3pm including breakfast, lunch, and an afternoon of enrichment! Can you as an individual, your church, or group of your friends support at least one child? Your gift will empower them as learners, building their self-esteem and teaching them that they are a part of their community and they can make a difference in their world!

We are offering two volunteer training sessions. You can expect a Freedom School orientation (Harambee!), workshops on food safety/preparation/serving, reading with kids, etc. We will also invite reading volunteers to help organize children's books that have been donated to Freedom School

  • June 11 at 6pm
  • June 12 at 11am

Attached below you will find colorful brochures for you to download, make copies, distribute in your churches, at your work, give to friends and wherever you serve in other giving organizations! Let's distribute these all over the Maumee Watershed District!

Want to volunteer? Email: babc1743 [at] (Barbara)
Need a speaker?  Email: rschleif [at] (Rae Lynn)

Want to give? Mail checks made payable to Maumee Watershed District, memo line: Freedom School. (Maumee Watershed District, 1729 Indian Wood Circle, Maumee, OH 43537.)


Watch the videos below from our Freedom Schools.

Video 1, click here.  Watch this years' Freedom School leaders/organizers talk about the Freedom School and why it's so important.

Video 2, click here.  Listen to one volunteers story of her journey giving her time at this years' Freedom School.