March 12, 2024

The CHP Reads! Summer Reading Program returns this year for its sixth year of helping students stay sharp over the summer. In 2023, the program was expanded to include seniors and grandparents, and in 2024, Community Housing Partners (CHP) is encouraging grandparents to use books to connect with the children in their lives.

CHP, a nonprofit organization that provides affordable and sustainable housing throughout the Southeast and Mid-Atlantic, first launched the CHP Reads! Summer Reading Program in 2019 to help young residents at its apartment communities combat summer learning loss. The program has grown significantly over the past six years, with CHP staff and volunteers handing out over 18,000 books and hosting over 100 events across 40 properties.

Early childhood education is crucial in establishing a strong foundation for lifelong learning, and reading is an essential tool in this process. During the summer months, young children can experience the summer slide, a significant setback in their development. Regular reading can help lessen this loss by maintaining reading skills, sparking curiosity and imagination, and building a strong foundation for future success.

To ensure the program continues to grow, CHP is collecting donations to purchase books, install more Little Free Libraries, and stock book fair activities and distribution tables. Since its inception, the program has given books to children and seniors with the help of CHP employees, volunteers, and online donors. As CHP prioritizes early childhood education, this year’s book collection efforts will focus on board books for younger children. Visit the Bucks for Books fundraising page for more information about contributing.

The return of the CHP Reads! Summer Reading Program corresponds with National NeighborWorks Week (June 1-8), a week-long celebration where NeighborWorks organizations highlight their collective impact and demonstrate how they strengthen communities. CHP has been a chartered member of NeighborWorks America since 2003.

Participating Virginia properties include Ansell Gardens Apartments in Portsmouth; Belleville Meadows Apartments in Suffolk; Bluegrass Apartments in Pulaski; Checed Warwick Apartments in Newport News; Cross Creek Apartments in Portsmouth; Dolly Ann Apartments in Covington; Ellett Road Community in Blacksburg; Ephphatha Village in Charlottesville; Friendship Village Apartments in Virginia Beach; Grayson Manor in Independence; Greenstone on 5th Apartments in Charlottesville; Heather Glen Apartments in Radford; Henley Place Apartments in Christiansburg; Hollybrook Apartments in Richmond; Holly Court Apartments in Kilmarnock; Huckleberry Court Apartments  Christiansburg; Kippax Place Apartments in Hopewell; Kingsridge Apartments in Richmond; Lafayette Elderly and Lafayette Family Apartments in Williamsburg; Lindsay Hill Senior Apartments in Lorton; Laurel Woods Apartments in Pulaski; Linden Green Apartments in Christiansburg; Linden Grove Apartments in Christiansburg; Maplewood Apartments in Martinsville; Meadowview Apartments in Pulaski; Northway Apartments in Galax; Old Orchard Apartments in Pearisburg; Overlook Terrace Apartments in Fredericksburg; Parkview Gardens Apartments in Farmville; Rivermeade Apartments in Yorktown; The Summit in Hopewell; The Warwick Apartments in Newport News; The Woods at Yorktown in Yorktown; Townsquare at Dumfries in Dumfries; Wellesley Commons Apartments in Newport News; and Yorktown Square Apartments in Yorktown.

In Maryland, participating properties include J. Van Story Branch Apartments and Primrose Place Apartments, both of which are in Baltimore.