Tutoring, volunteering and more!

Carly with her Tutor Sarah – Summer 2017

I have almost reached my year anniversary of being the new (not all that new now!) Program Director at GiGi’s Playhouse Westchester. What an amazing place this is; I am so grateful for all of you!

Since that first day, when I walked in with my daughter and her girl scout troop to help at the holiday party, I just knew I HAD to be a part of this organization. I told the Site Coordinator that I was willing to do anything, but I was really interested in tutoring. The Playhouse had plans to begin the Literacy program but were not sure when the pilot would start. In the meantime, I volunteered by coming in during the day, organizing and inventorying resources. As time went by, I was given more and more responsibility.

Finally, we were ready to launch the Literacy program pilot! I was so excited! I was matched with a young boy and I really enjoyed getting to know him and his family. That was the best part of my week! I went on to tutor for another 4 sessions. The best part of the program is that the students are excited to come to the Playhouse and read. As a former special education teacher, this fills my heart with immense joy, and I really enjoyed celebrating their #BestofAll.

As time has gone on, I have met amazing families and students who have all made great progress. In addition to the families, I have also been fortunate to meet other wonderful and inspiring volunteers. Volunteers are the backbone of GiGi’s Playhouse. We could not provide these wonderful, FREE and purposeful programs without YOU!

When I took on the role of Program Director, my involvement in the literacy Program changed a little, but I still get to see the joy in the student’s and family’s eyes when they walk into the Playhouse for their weekly Literacy sessions. Over the Summer, a student came into the Playhouse with a huge grin and immediately asked for her tutor, running into the Playhouse. She was so excited to see her tutor again. After some hugs, she was eager to get started and to showcase all her hard work over the previous week.

“Carly loves her tutor, Sarah, who has worked with her over the summer. Sarah does a great job keeping Carly engaged at all times and making reading fun! Debbie has done a great job creating customized photo books for Carly to enjoy that are of particular interest to her. Carly has always loved books but now she can read many of the words and is beginning to read to us. We appreciate Sarah and Debbie for being amazing volunteers by helping Carly become literate.” 
– Beth, Carly’s mom

Volunteering at GiGi’s Playhouse Westchester is such a rewarding, enjoyable and fun activity to participate in. We are 99% volunteer-led and each volunteer plays a wonderful, important and active role in developing and delivering our FREE and purposeful programs to our families. Becoming a tutor enables you to truly get to know your student and their family and to have a positive impact on them and an amazing opportunity to help them develop their Literacy skills – changing lives one step at a time.


Winter registration opens December 5th, please visit our website to register your interest. https://gigisplayhouse.org/westchester/one-one-literacy-tutoring/

Any questions, please contact Tracy – tsmith@gigisplayhouse.org


Tracy Smith, Program Director

1 Comment

  1. Frank Madaio on January 22, 2018 at 10:28 pm

    Great blog. Very insightful. Thanks

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