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Posted: September 12, 2019

College literacy programs to get funds

The British Columbia government Sept. 9 announced more than 90 communities with Community Adult Literacy Programming (CALP) will be sharing $2.4 million program funding, including those managed by College of the Rockies in the East Kootenay.

“Our government is investing in programs that break down barriers to empower people to be more active members in their communities,” said Melanie Mark, Minister of Advanced Education, Skills and Training. “We know that it’s critically important for people to have literacy and numeracy skills to complete simple daily tasks like cooking, attending medical appointments and applying for work. I applaud these community organizations that are the unsung heroes that open doors and create pathways for all British Columbians.”

Mark and Shane Simpson, MLA for Vancouver-Hastings, announced $2.4 million to be shared among 94 community adult literacy programs that are run by 69 different service providers.

Post-secondary institutions work with community literacy providers to connect adult learners with the skills they need to build a strong future for themselves, their families and their community. These partnerships support improved learning outcomes and encourage people to transition from community programs to post-secondary studies.

Programming includes a variety of learning opportunities, including one-on-one tutoring and small group instruction, and supports all levels of literacy from basic to high school completion level. For many adult learners, literacy programs are an important first step in an educational journey to post-secondary studies.

College of the Rockies will receive funding for:

  • Adult Literacy Programs in the East Kootenay – Columbia Basin Alliance for Literacy (Golden, Windermere Valley, Creston, Cranbrook, Kimberley, Elk Valley);
  • Family Literacy Programs in the East Kootenay – Columbia Basin Alliance for Literacy (Golden, Windermere Valley, Creston, Cranbrook, Kimberley, Elk Valley);
  • Young Parents Education Programs – Columbia Basin Alliance for Literacy (Cranbrook).

Grants of up to $30,000 per program are awarded to community adult literacy organizations to deliver Indigenous, adult and family literacy programs. These community programs help British Columbians develop stronger reading, writing and math skills.

Most programs offer one-on-one tutoring or small-group classes delivered by trained volunteers and are delivered in a variety of settings, such as schools, non-profit organizations and Indigenous friendship and community centres.

The difference between adult literacy and Adult Basic Education programs is that the community literacy programs are informal and non-credit literacy and numeracy, life skills and employment preparation programs delivered in the community so students feel at home and more comfortable. Quite often they precede the pursuit of adult upgrading programs.

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