If you’re reading this, you’ve probably never considered what life is like for the illiterate. Their worlds can be pretty small — because they can’t read street signs or maps, learn about job openings, fill out applications or forms, understand safety information or insurance coverage, or even pick out a greeting card.
How does someone grow to adulthood without basic English reading and writing skills? Lots of ways. Kids in families that move a lot are always starting over in school and falling behind. Some kids have undiagnosed learning disabilities, or parents that simply do not think education is important. Then, there are immigrants who are new to America. They may have been well educated professionals in their home country, but come here not knowing the language or the culture.
Literacy Volunteers, a nationwide nonprofit and foundation grantee, provides free English language classes and tutoring that can turn a limited existence into a whole new world. Here are some quotes from Literacy Volunteers student essays that prove the point.
Not everybody gets the same start in life. But thanks to Literacy Volunteers, everybody has a chance to learn to read write. Hats off to Literacy Volunteers for opening up its students to bigger worlds and more fulfilling lives!
[And, next time someone in the greeting card aisle asks you to help them pick out a card because they ‘forgot their glasses,’ just know you’re doing your bit to make life a little easier for a nonreader.]