Community-based adult literacy programs in Kamloops and the surrounding area are giving people the reading, writing, math and computer skills needed to manage personal finances, join in community activities and help their children with their homework.
“Literacy is a set of skills that includes the ability to read and write — something many of us take for granted,” said Melanie Mark, Minister of Advanced Education, Skills and Training. “We want people to gain the confidence so they can contribute to their community or go on to post-secondary studies or apply for a skills training course. We’re investing in 11 community-based literacy projects in the Kamloops area to help people succeed.”
The Province is providing $243,826 this year to Thompson Rivers University (TRU) to support 11 community adult literacy program partners in the area.
The university works 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. Literacy providers and post-secondary institutions collaborate to support improved outcomes and encourage transition from programs delivered in the community to post-secondary studies.
“Literacy skills can unlock so much potential in people, whether at home, at work or even going on to pursue a degree,” said Christine Bovis-Cnossen, interim president of TRU. “TRU has been partnering with community-based partners for many years to bring literacy, numeracy and computer skills to people throughout the area.”
Available literacy programs include one-on-one tutoring and small group training for adult learners, often delivered by volunteers. Smaller, community-based literacy programs are well situated to meet the educational needs of adult learners.
A total of $2.4 million for 101 community adult literacy programs will help adult learners in 75 communities in 2018-19.
The government’s support of community-based literacy programs is part of its commitment to connect people with the education and training they need to succeed. On Aug. 8, 2017, the Province also made adult upgrading and English language learning programs in B.C. tuition-free.
- More than 700,000 adults in B.C. have significant challenges with literacy.
- 45% of adults in B.C. have some difficulty with daily living tasks due to limited literacy skills. Literacy challenges can include difficulty understanding newspapers, reading health information and following instruction manuals.
- 52% of adults in B.C. have difficulty in accomplishing some daily living tasks due to limited numeracy skills. Numeracy challenges can include difficulty calculating interest on a car loan, using information on a graph or calculating medicine dosage.
A backgrounder follows.