Road to Freedom

Road to Freedom2019-12-12T17:15:01-05:00

Scholars at CDF Freedom Schools® are hard at work expanding their reading skills, and they’re also learning how to unlock their full potential. By the end of the summer, scholars from kindergarten through 12th grade will learn how they can make a difference in themselves, their communities, the country, and the world.

Click here to view more videos showing how CDF Freedom Schools across the country are embracing our special recipe for making a difference: hope, education, and action.

Watch More Videos

Students at CDF Freedom Schools.


“My son loved Ms. Keshia as a teacher. He loved Harambee [the affirming morning welcome celebration] and asked very thoughtful questions to me about being a Black man in the United States. He is culturally proud, intellectually stimulated, and emotionally sound because of this program.”

—Parent, Washington South Shore Building Leaders of Change, CDF Freedom Schools site


David at CDF Freedom Schools training, June 2019.


“Outside the CDF Freedom Schools classroom, you don’t know what is going on in your scholars’ lives. But once they enter your caring environment, all of that goes away. Once they’re in that classroom, it’s a family.”

David Williams, CDF Freedom Schools scholar, Student Leader Intern and trainer

Read David’s Story

Students at CDF Freedom Schools.


“One ultimate goal [of CDF Freedom Schools] is for kids to actually be excited about learning and see themselves in what they learn and see the power and potential that reading has in their lives.”  

—Dr. Lakia M. Scott, Executive Director, Indian Spring Middle School, CDF Freedom Schools site, Waco, TX, and Assistant Professor, Baylor University School of Education

Helping Children in Need This Summer

Thousands of children, college students and community partners will have an unforgettable experience this summer when they participate in CDF Freedom Schools. Across the country, CDF Freedom Schools will inspire, engage and ignite ‘scholars’ to learn and dream in a safe place, valued and supported by caring adults, at no cost to their families.

In community centers and churches, on college campuses and in juvenile detention facilities, scholars significantly improve their reading skills and are empowered with the belief that they are capable of making a difference in their own lives, in their communities and beyond.


Quiz: What is the summer slide?

Hint: you won’t find it in a playground.

Take our short quiz to learn about the “summer slide” and why we’re talking about it now.

Take the Quiz

What is Freedom Schools?

This summer, more than 12,000 children in underserved communities will attend CDF Freedom Schools, where they’ll receive six weeks of quality education and enrichment designed to improve their reading skills and foster a love of learning.

Learn More

Your Help Makes an Impact

Scholars are fed over 700,000 nutritious meals over the 6-week summer program.

On average, scholars gain 8+ months of reading skills during the six-week program.

90% of parents saw a positive change in their CDF Freedom Schools scholar.

See more stats

Explore the Books Scholars are Reading

CDF Freedom Schools scholars read high-quality, culturally relevant fiction, non-fiction, and reference books. Each child takes home at least one brand new book each week. Check out the books our scholars are reading.

See the book list

Support the Road to Freedom:
Unlock children’s unlimited potential

$5 / month will provide a home library of high-quality, culturally relevant books for one CDF Freedom Schools scholar

$12 / month will provide 6 weeks of nutritious meals for one CDF Freedom Schools scholar

$18 / month will send a child to CDF Freedom Schools for one week

Donate now.

Make a Monthly Gift