It all starts with Literacy.

Bush Helps Squirt Not Be Left Behind

Neil Bush 1-9-15 Houston event


In this video, Neil Bush speaks about his experience as a TutorMate volunteer helping Houston first-grader Savannah learn to read. Once a week, like all of our other tutors across the country, Neil spends 30 minutes online with his student from wherever he is. Together they read stories and play fun games that help build critical literacy skills.

And he can tell that it’s really helping. From the messages and updates he gets from Savannah’s teacher, he knows that his work as a tutor is “helping her be successful as a teacher.” He can also see the progress that Savannah makes from week to week as she masters new words and reads different stories.

But, as Neil points out, our tutors help their students in other important ways, too. “Beyond just the reading and the tutoring…there’s no doubt that the intervention of a loving adult, of a caring human being, in the life of a little squirt…has to make a difference.”

Neil serves as Chairman of Points of Light, the largest organization in the world dedicated to volunteer service, and as Chair of the Barbara Bush Houston Literacy Foundation.

If you’re in the Houston area, you can volunteer as a TutorMate tutor in a Houston ISD school as part of the Read Houston Read initiative.  Read more from HISD about how to get involved here.

Otherwise, you may be able to volunteer as an online literacy tutor through your company. For more information on how to get your organization involved, contact

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