Press Releases

MANCHESTER, Ky. -- The first Save the Children program in the United States started in Harlan County, Kentucky in 1932. Today, it is a global network for educational and wellness programs led with the help of Mark Shriver and award-winning actress Jennifer Garner. On Tuesday, they joined Congressman Harold "Hal" Rogers (KY-05) and Kentucky Senate President Robert Stivers in Clay County to discuss childhood challenges and visit successful programs in rural Eastern Kentucky.

"It was an honor to spend the day in Rep. Rogers' district and visit Save the Children's programs in Clay County," said Jennifer Garner, an actress and Save the Children Trustee. "Early childhood education and care help lift kids out of poverty, so we must invest in home visiting and literacy programs, like the ones we saw today in eastern Kentucky. I'm grateful to state and federal leaders like Rep. Rogers, who are helping us shine a light on the good work happening to give kids a brighter future."

The group visited Manchester Elementary School where many students receive free tutoring through innovative Save the Children programs to improve reading. As a result, a growing number of students are achieving distinguished or proficient ratings for literacy.

"The challenges we face in Eastern Kentucky are not new, but every year, more people are stepping up to invest time and resources to transform this region," said Congressman Rogers. "Thanks to partnerships from superstars, like Jennifer Garner and Mark Shriver, we can elevate awareness, implement effective programs and drive hope where it's needed the most. I appreciate the continued work of Save the Children in the lives of our young students."

The group also visited with two families who participate in the Early Steps to School Success Program, which provides children under the age of five with language, social and emotional development skills to ensure every child is ready for Kindergarten.

“We were thrilled to visit Save the Children’s programs with Congressman Rogers in his district today, and we are so thankful for his commitment to children’s issues,” said Mark Shriver, Senior Vice President of U.S. Programs and Advocacy for Save the Children. “Save the Children works in eight counties across Kentucky, and serves nearly 2,200 children in Clay County, so we appreciated the opportunity to showcase what we know to be true – early childhood education transforms lives, especially for children living in poverty.”

Wrapping up the visit, Garner, Shriver, Rogers and Stivers led a community discussion about childhood education and wellness at the EKU Manchester Campus with approximately 150 attendees.

"Save the Children has been a vital resource for Kentucky families and schools for decades, providing children and young parents with new skills and a boost of confidence," said Kentucky Senate President Robert Stivers. "These research-based programs are giving our students a brighter future and I'm grateful for the success we are seeing in our students as a result."

Save the Children serves 41 Kentucky communities, reaching nearly 18,000 children every year.

Mark Shriver speaks at community luncheon

Mark Shriver spoke to 150 attendees at the EKU Manchester Campus

Garner arrives at Manchester Elementary

Congressman Rogers welcomes actress Jennifer Garner to Manchester Elementary School

Rogers & Shriver read with local student

Congressman Rogers & Mark Shriver read with a local student

Rogers and Shriver watch student take an AR test

Congressman Rogers and Mark Shriver applaud a student for passing all reading quizzes

Rogers and Shriver observe a reading group

Congressman Rogers and Shriver observe a reading group at Manchester Elementary

Garner with Hal & Cynthia Rogers

Left to right: Cynthia Rogers, Jennifer Garner and Congressman Hal Rogers