Connecting People with Purpose - Celebrating 50 Years of Volunteering


Can you imagine a world where you were unable to read or do simple math? Think how much you would not understand and how your confidence would suffer. Reading and mathematics are basic to all the learning that takes place in elementary school. Without these skills, a child is at risk of falling behind. 

But thanks to HOSC's Lunch Buddies, help is available in the form of a kind, older friend who meets once each week for an hour with a group of assigned students to provide math and/or reading tutoring. Lunch Buddies began in 2015 at Jane Addams Elementary School in Palatine to assist low-income students with their homework. Since that time, the focus of the program has shifted to helping 4th, 5th, and 6th graders improve their math and reading skills. Lunch Buddies has also expanded to Plainfield Elementary School in Des Plaines and Euclid Elementary School in Mount Prospect. In addition to the academic assistance the students receive, there is also the opportunity to build trusting relationships with non-family adults.

Below we highlight one of our Lunch Buddies, Diane Mier. As with so many of our volunteers, she points out that it's not only the student who benefits from the experience. 

Sign up to become a Lunch Buddy next year.  We could not do this important work without caring volunteers like YOU! 

Sincerely ,
Jordan Friedman
Executive Director, HOSC
Meet Lunch Buddy Diane Mier

Diane, a retired educator and longtime volunteer, raves about her experiences as a Lunch Buddy.  She appreciates "having a connection with a student, building a relationship, being back in a school, and feeling like I am important in someone's life. I enjoy getting to know the kids and the other volunteers. I feel like I am part of a family that's not my own." Her best reward is "seeing how their confidence is building as their skills improve."

Thursday Lunch Buddies tutors and students at Jane Addams Elementary School

Lunch Buddies Impact
  • 100% of the Lunch Buddies students in 6th grade achieved satisfactory grades and school attendance. 
    • 92% reported having an adult in their lives whom they trust--a key factor for school engagement, re-engagement, and on-time graduation.
  • All the 5th grade teachers reported observing improvements in class participation.
  • All the 4th grade teachers reported seeing improvements in class participation, school attendance, and assignment completion rates.
F Y 2017-18 data
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Connecting People with Purpose