Middletown Rotary Club Launches Family Literacy Project for Refugee and Immigrant Families.  The Middletown Rotary Club has maintained a close relationship with IRIS, Immigration and Refugee Integration Services of CT, for many years.  


With the recent crises in Afghanistan and Ukraine, their ties have strengthened.  Partnering with “The Valley Stands Up” (TVSU), a lower Connecticut River valley area volunteer advocacy group that has supported Afghan refugee resettlement efforts, they recently launched a family literacy program by providing literacy supplies for a newly arrived Afghan family who resides in Middletown.  Their project “Pat’s Books”, named in honor of a recently deceased Rotarian dedicated to literacy, Pat Tucker, was created to provide support for one hundred immigrant and refugee families who need help with English language skills.  

Says Megan Bush, Middletown Rotary Club President, “Our hearts break for any country fleeing this kind of terror”.  She added, “As Rotarians who serve all over the world, we feel compelled to respond”.  Mark Pierce, leader of TVSU, commented, “Our team has worked tirelessly to find jobs, housing, all the school and medical services needed, English language skill support, medical assistance, etc. for this family.  The Middletown Rotary Club has supported us financially, with community connections and through this family literacy initiative.” 

To date, approximately forty (40) book bags have been distributed in the greater Middletown area.  Each bag of Pat’s Books contains information on literacy resources, books that are age appropriate for children in the family, picture dictionaries for adults and reading tips for parents to use with their young children.  Referrals for these resources have come from Literacy Volunteers of Central CT, Middletown Public Schools and Middletown Adult Education.  All bags must be distributed by year end.  Anyone who wishes to recommend a family for this service is free to contact the Middletown Rotary Club at middletownrotary.org