Thursday, May 20, 2021

Bergen READS and US Standard Products: Helping Students Thrive

 It is estimated that 40% of United States fourth graders lack proficiency in reading. 

Bergen Volunteers aims to combat this staggering statistic through the Bergen READS program, which trains adult Reading Buddies to work with students in Kindergarten through fourth grade to help them achieve academic success and improve their literacy skills. 

Bergen READS specifically helps:

  • Low-income students
  • English-language learners
  • Students identified as in need of extra support

Since 1966, Bergen Volunteers has been working with local volunteers to provide vital services to those in need. In our mission to build a better community through the power of volunteer service we have partnered with thousands of community groups, civic leaders, nonprofit organizations, and businesses. While the work would not be possible without the time and effort of our volunteers, we also depend on the generosity of the many donors who recognize the importance of the work we do. A business that has been pivotal in helping Bergen READS sustain itself throughout the COVID-19 pandemic has been US Standard Products. With the help of businesses like US Standard Products, we are able to continue serving the community through outreach, volunteerism, and civic leadership. 

Josh Rubach of US Standard Products initially reached out to Bergen Volunteers looking for a way to give back. He felt an instant connection to the Bergen READS program, as his late mother was an educator during a greater part of her life. He knew Bergen READS was the right program for him to support based on his mother’s love for reading and his current connection to his young children that are the same age as many Bergen READS students. 

Rubach shared, “My kids are lucky enough to have a support system around them to reinforce their confidence, creativity, and motivation. I know that is not the case for everyone. I donate because I want to help other children achieve academic success and reach reading milestones. I want to have a positive impact on another life and be the catalyst that will help them move forward.”

Rubach understands that the fundamentals of literacy need to be taught to children at a young age.  “I am happy to work with Bergen Volunteers and support the Bergen READS program that helps 200+ students annually receive literary tutoring, support, and guidance” noted Josh. "My hope is that these students will pay it forward in their futures and continue the cycle of giving.”

Support from Josh Rubach and US Standard Products helps these students beyond their classroom learning. Bergen READS promotes academic success overall by helping students with comprehension, fluency, speech, and vocabulary expansion. Additionally, students become more apt critical thinkers, with the ability to self-monitor and retain information. These important skills help students become better communicators, with increased self-confidence, self-esteem, and social skills.

Do you want to help more students connect with reading buddies and improve their literacy skills? Adopt a student today by reaching out to Elizabeth at

Tuesday, May 11, 2021

"I have nothing but time!"

The average person spends 79 years on Earth, which equates to over 690,000 hours of time spent breathing, talking, laughing, living, and so much more!