80th Anniversary Gift

Celebrate Reach Out and Read’s Return to Waco


Reach Out and Read is returning to Waco, and the Junior League of Waco, the Family Health Center, and Prosper Waco are proud to invite the community to celebrate the launch of this collaborative program.

Reach Out and Read is a nationwide program that provides children with a foundation for success by incorporating books into pediatric well-child visits and by encouraging families to read aloud together. Research has shown that, across economic, ethnic, and geographic lines, the program significantly impacts parental behavior and attitudes towards reading aloud, and young children who participate in the program achieve higher language scores.


The Junior League of Waco, the Family Health Center, and Prosper Waco have collaborated to bring Reach Out and Read back to the Waco community. In honor of the League’s 80thanniversary, the Junior League of Waco is giving an $80,000 grant to the Family Health Center. The grant will fully fund Waco’s Reach Out and Read program for five years.

Dr. Roland Goertz, the Executive Director of the Family Health Center, explains, “Most visits include measuring and discussing development, and parents usually ask, ‘Well, is my child developing well?’ There’s a great window to use the recommended pathway for Reach Out and Read. Plus, it fits into our whole process.”

Each year, over 14,000 children visit the Family Health Center for their well-child visits, and during these visits, they will be able to take part in the Reach Out and Read program. Initially, the program will be implemented at the South 18th Street Community Clinic and at the McArthur Pediatric Clinic, but eventually, it will expand to other clinics.