little girl smiling sweetly at her SMART volunteer

At SMART Reading, we believe that reading is the gateway to learning and opportunity for Oregon’s kids. Every day we mobilize our statewide community of volunteers to make a direct impact on kids through one-on-one reading sessions and new books to keep. Because the simple magic and joy of a shared book can change a child’s life trajectory. 

Volunteer Opportunities

Volunteer Reader

Time commitment: 1 hour per week for a full school year (Applications accepted year-round. Volunteers will be placed August - March).

Training requirement: 20-minute online orientation and 1-hour on-site orientation.

How to apply: Apply online at the bottom of this page! All applicants are required to undergo a national criminal background check.

SMART Reading Volunteer Readers spend an hour each week during the school year reading one-on-one with PreK through third-grade kids, modeling and fostering a joy of reading while supporting the child’s efforts to read independently. Our Volunteer Readers are paired with the same children each week, developing a mentoring relationship with the students they read with over the course of the year. Volunteer Readers are essential to realizing SMART Reading's vision of an Oregon where all children can realize their full potential through reading. To download the full Volunteer Reader position description, click here. (Opens in a new tab/window).

Volunteer Site Coordinator

Time commitment: average of 2-8 hours per week depending on the site (mid-September through mid-May).

Training requirement: Three 3 hour training sessions starting in mid-September and monthly 1-2 hour team meetings October-May. For late-starting programs, training sessions will take place as needed.

How to apply: Apply online at the bottom of this page! All applicants are required to undergo a national criminal background check. Staff will follow up with more information about the role.

Volunteer Site Coordinators are leadership volunteers who implement and oversee the program at a SMART Reading site with the support of staff and Volunteer Readers. A program is not able to open until this critical role has been filled. It is because of the leadership and dedication of over 350 Volunteer Site Coordinators across the state that thousands of Volunteer Readers and students are able to read together each year. To download the full Volunteer Site Coordinator position description, click here. (Opens in a new tab/window).

Leadership Council Member

SMART Reading Leadership Council Members are individuals across Oregon who help SMART Reading flourish in their local communities through fundraising, friendraising and volunteer recruitment. To see who’s on your local SMART Reading Leadership Council, click here and select your local area. (Opens in a new tab/window). If you are interested in learning more about how to get involved with a SMART Reading Leadership Council, please contact your local SMART Reading office. (Opens in a new tab/window).

Essential Qualities of a SMART Volunteer

  • If you can agree to the three statements below, we would love to have YOU join us as a SMART Reading volunteer!

    If you can’t make a weekly commitment, contact your local SMART Reading office to learn more about other opportunities to get involved.