E-Hand to Hand, News from El Buen Samaritano - July 2012 Issue
Partner Shout-out: Literacy Coalition of Central TexasBy Amy Goettle, Education Programs Coordinator
Did you know that one in five central Texans can't read? By 2040, the Texas Workforce Investment Council predicts that the need for literacy instruction services will double. That's why El Buen Samaritano's partnership with the Literacy Coalition of Central Texas (LCCT) is so important now more than ever.
For over five years of collaboration, the LCCT has offered health literacy, workforce literacy and English as a Second Language (ESL) instructor trainings to volunteers and staff members to help strengthen El Buen's literacy services for adults as well as children.
"The Literacy Coalition has not only added an incredible value to our organization, but to the Central Texas community as well," said Mona Izquierdo, director of education. "From our AmeriCorps member, to the their tireless work in raising awareness of the need for literacy, the Literacy Coalition facilitates planning efforts of their community partners to provide the most effective services for Central Texans without duplicating services."
This year alone, the partnership has brought the Learner Web, a free self-paced program to improve digital literacy, added an AmeriCorps Member pre-trained in ESL instruction to El Buen Samaritano's Adult Education team, and pulled resources of all community partners in quarterly council meetings to define and combat the needs of the low literate population.
"The Literacy Coalition does an incredible job of keeping us up-to-date on recent trends so that we can stay current on the needs of our community," said Sarah Templeton, Child Learning Center coordinator. "The council meetings have been a great way to keep in touch with other local organizations to share best practices and look for more collaboration opportunities."
Collin Jevne, literacy AmeriCorps member and assistant education coordinator, found a new passion thanks to the services provided by the Literacy Coalition.
"The trainings and information provided by the Literacy Coalition not only helped my professional growth, but gave me a new passion for advancing the literacy cause. It's startling that states determine how many jail beds to purchase based on students' third grade reading levels," Collin said. "Thanks to the tools provided to me by the Literacy Coalition, I can use my newfound passion to fight that devastating fact and turn my enthusiasm into a reality at El Buen."
Thanks, Literacy Coalition of Central Texas!