Thursday, December 23, 2010

#90: The Literacy Council of St. Joseph County

“More than 1 in 5 adults in St. Joseph County read below a fourth grade level.” Staggering statistics like this illustrate the need for an organization like The Literacy Council of St. Joseph County. While admittedly a small non-profit, the Council does the work of an organization three times its size. And amid the large (and wonderful) non-profit community in the county, an organization like the Council can get overshadowed.

For many of us the ability to read is an undervalued common skill while for many others, the ability to read is the one missing essential skill. The Council focuses on two major areas, adult literacy and early-childhood literacy. Research has demonstrated, and it stands to common sense, that an early introduction to reading and the development of literacy skills will provide many benefits later in life while older instruction gives the adult the possibility to now complete basic tasks for a job and more fully enter into society. To accomplish these two goals, the Council offers one-on-one adult tutoring and small-group GED instruction, gives away free books to newborns and their parents, and holds Success Under 6 workshops for both parents and their children.

The Council is completely funded by donations and staffed by volunteers. They are always looking for tutors and welcome any type of contribution. For me personally, I can’t imagine any better way to give back to the South Bend/greater St. Joe County community than helping an organization that helps others learn how to read.

Donate here.

Learn more about the organization and literacy in the community here.


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