Literacy Volunteers of Wayne County

Literacy is a critical issue that affects everyone. Six thousand adults in Wayne County - 1 in 12 - lack basic literacy skills. Some have moved here from other countries. Others grew up here, but for a variety of reasons struggle to read and write. They live in your town or village. They are your neighbors. They struggle with tasks many of us take for granted - like filling in a job application, reading to their children, or understanding the instructions on medicine bottles. Many have learned to hide their reading problems, so you probably don't even know who they are. Unfortunately, illiteracy affects many more people than just the individual. The skilled nurse's medical experience could save lives if she were able to speak the English language. If the shop owner could write better, he could do more business and help the local economy. Worksite safety would improve if all employees could read the "Caution!" sign. Low literacy levels are strongly linked to poverty, crime, employee accidents, and school dropouts. Illiteracy costs everyone in the community. On the other hand, the entire community also benefits when one person's literacy improves. A mother has gotten involved in the PTA. A taxpayer has started on a new career path. A young adult has trained for a management position. A retiree has started volunteering at his district's elementary school. There is a ripple effect that reaches a large number of people as literacy students become better employees, parents, and community members. Literacy is an investment with a great return. The mission of Literacy Volunteers of Wayne County, Inc. is to promote and foster increased literacy in Wayne County. We do this through a variety of programs and activities: ADULT TUTORING Trained volunteers provide teaching in Adult Literacy, English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL), and Digital Literacy. Students and tutors meet at various times and locations throughout Wayne County. Tutoring services are free and focus on the individual needs of the learner. We serve approximately 150 adults each year, helping them earn equivalency diplomas, find jobs, obtain US citizenship, and achieve other personal goals. SCHOOL BASED ACTIVITIES In participating schools, Literacy Volunteers collaborates with teachers to provide reading activities to children in the classroom as well as special Family Fun Literacy Nights to involve families in the joy of reading to their children. BOOKS FROM BIRTH Beginning in October 2011, Literacy Volunteers began giving a free book to all babies born at Newark Wayne Hospital. The gift package also includes a library card application and a guide to reading to your child. In addition, Books from Birth hosts Family Fun Nights at local libraries to share the joy of reading with families. LITTLE GREEN BOOKSHELVES AND ANNEX Free gently-used books are available for anyone to keep, read, and enjoy! Volunteers place bookshelves throughout the county and more books are available at the annex next to the office on Canal Street in Lyons. Over 10,000 books are given away each year. BACKGROUND Literacy Volunteers of Wayne County is nationally accredited by Pro-Literacy America and is a member organization of Literacy New York. We are also a Community Partner agency of the United Way of Wayne County. We have served the Wayne County community since 1979 and were formally incorporated in 1982. Financial support from concerned individuals and businesses ensures that participants have the materials and professional support they need to succeed in their education.

We focus on: Education, Community Benefit and Economic Development

Where we are: Wayne

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