ST. GEORGE – In a recent meeting of St. George Rotary, speaker Amy Mitchell, Title 1 director at the Washington County School District, told members of SGR, “studies have shown 74% of 3rd graders who read poorly still struggle in ninth grade and, it has been found, third grade reading scores can predict a student’s likelihood of graduating from high school.”
Mitchell also noted, “85% of juveniles who interface with the juvenile court system are functionally illiterate.” She also reported, “on average, every high school dropout costs U.S. taxpayers an estimated $292,000 over a lifetime … and 3 out of 5 inmates in U.S. prisons can’t read.”
Other statistics Mitchell reported show, “today’s 3rd graders not reading on grade level are on track to be our nation’s lowest income, least skilled citizens.”
In support of literacy in Washington County, the 8th annual St. George Rotary Club Swing for Literacy charity golf tournament will be held on Thursday, Oct. 21. This event at the beautiful Sunbrook Golf Course, is once again sponsored by Camping World, Southern Utah’s #1 destination for RV service, parts and sale of a wide variety of RVs, campers, and motorhomes. St. George Rotary wishes to thank both for their continued and generous support.
Other sponsoring friends of Rotary, helping to make this event possible are the local accounting firm Savage, Esplin and Radmall; Morty’s Café on St. George Blvd., and Red Rock Property Management.
Pre-registration for the tournament is required. Registration begins at 11:30 a.m. and includes a box lunches, prior to a shotgun start at noon.
Cost is $450 per team or $125 per person. Up to eighteen foursomes will play 18 holes and all participants will have a chance to win such giveaways as gift cards to area restaurants, passes to local golf courses and donated merchandise from Camping World, valued at $1500.
Tournament proceeds will benefit St. George Rotary Club’s literacy and scholarship projects including dictionaries for all 3rd grade students in 18 elementary schools in Washington County; scholarships to deserving students at Dixie Technical College; and support of the Lending Library at the St. George Children’s Museum.
Additional support from tournament participants will go towards the 73-member local service club’s signature humanitarian project in which Rotarians and friends of Rotary travel annually to the highlands of Guatemala to build simple, vented cinderblock stoves for Mayan families.
For those who do not wish to golf but would like to support Rotary and its causes, donations can be made to assist Rotary International in their most important project – the final eradication of polio. Since Rotary took on this seemingly impossible challenge in the mid-1980’s, the incidence of polio has dropped by 99.9% with a current worldwide case count of just one since New Year’s Day 2021. To date, in the first 259 days or 33 weeks of this year, not a single case of wild polio has occurred anywhere on earth.
St. George Rotary is the oldest – chartered in January 1931 – of now seven Rotary clubs in Washington County, including Red Rock, Dixie Sunrise, Hurricane Valley, Zion Canyon, Washington City and the Southern Utah Veterans Rotary Club – one of only 3 such veterans cause-based clubs in the U. S.
Rotary is a community-wide, statewide and worldwide service organization with current membership of more than 1.2 million community leaders, including 1600 in 46 clubs in Utah. Rotarians give “service above self” to create positive, lasting change in the community and the world by promoting peace, fighting disease, digging wells to provide clean drinking water; safeguarding the health of mothers and children; supporting education and economic growth, particularly in 3rd world countries; and protecting the environment.