Reach Out and Read Utah

Congressman Jim Matheson (D-UT 2nd) reading in a doctor’s waiting room.

Reach Out and Read Utah distributes more than 68,000 books per year to over 38,000 Utah children annually

Reach Out and Read Utah    PO Box 521327    Salt Lake City, UT  84152    801-810-7323

phone: 801-539-0852 email:

Reach Out and Read Utah is part of the national organization Reach Out and Read. Reach Out and Read is an evidence-based nonprofit organization that promotes early literacy and school readiness in pediatric exam rooms nationwide by giving new books to children and advice to parents about the importance of reading aloud.

Reach Out and Read Utah builds on the unique relationship between parents and medical providers to develop critical early reading skills in children, beginning at six months of age. The four million families in the United States served annually by Reach Out and Read read together more often, and their children enter kindergarten better prepared to succeed, with larger vocabularies and stronger language skills.

Our Mission

Reach Out and Read Utah prepares Utah’s youngest children to succeed in school by partnering with doctors to prescribe books and encourage families to read together.

Reach Out and Read Utah trains doctors and nurses to advise parents about the importance of reading aloud and to give books to children at pediatric checkups from 6 months through 5 years of age, with a special focus on children growing up in poverty. By building on the unique relationship between parents and medical providers, Reach Out and Read Utah helps families and communities encourage early literacy skills so children enter school prepared for success in reading.

The Reach Out and Read Model

Pediatric healthcare providers (including pediatricians, family physicians, and pediatric nurse practitioners) are trained in the three-part Reach Out and Read model to promote early literacy and school readiness:

· In the exam room, doctors and nurses speak with parents about the importance of reading aloud to their young children every day, and offer age-appropriate tips and encouragement.

· The pediatric primary care provider gives every child 6 months through 5 years old a new, developmentally-appropriate children's book to take home and keep.

· In the waiting room, displays, information, and books create a literacy-rich environment. Where possible, volunteer readers entertain the children, modeling for parents the pleasures - and techniques - of reading aloud.

Since 1998, Reach Out and Read volunteer medical providers have been promoting early childhood literacy and school preparedness in Utah in 1998. Reach Out and Read Utah now has 37 active clinical sites throughout the state. In 2012, over 250 Utah medical providers gave over 68,000 books to more than 38,000 Utah children.

Click to visit the Reach Out and Read National Center website

Watch a video from  REACH OUT AND READ NATIONAL to learn more about our model and impact


At-Risk Latino Children in Reach Out and Read Have Strong Kindergarten Literacy Skills
A Utah study shows that at-risk Latino children who participate in Reach Out and Read from six month of age have average or above average literacy skills by the end of kindergarten, and good home literacy environments.
The study – entitled “Kindergarten Readiness and Performance of Latino Children Participating in Reach Out and Read” -- is detailed in the Journal of Community Medicine & Health Education.

Reach Out and Read featured on PBS News Hour

Thank you Sugarhouse Rotary!