The dedicated staff at Redland Libraries are passionate about enriching people’s lives through lifelong learning. Underpinning lifelong learning is literacy – the ability to read. Whether reading for enjoyment, to study or keep up-to-date with news in the local community and world around us, literacy is an essential life skill.
However, many adult Australians struggle with everyday reading, writing and numeracy. While there are many well-funded initiatives to support and encourage early childhood literacy, little support is available for adults, including here in the Redlands. The programs that are available generally cater for job seekers or migrants from other cultural backgrounds, but overlook stay-at-home parents, retired grandparents, or people in the workforce who need help with literacy. For this reason, Redland Libraries has established its new Adult Literacy Program to help support some of these overlooked groups.
Redland Libraries seek expressions of interest from people in the community who would like to become volunteer Adult Literacy Mentors. After being interviewed, the volunteers are given 25 hours of training from an Adult Literacy Practitioner.
Each volunteer is matched on a one-to-one basis with an adult learner based on mutual interests and compatibility. These pairs then meet weekly in a Redlands Library branch of their choice to work on the learner’s specific literacy or numeracy goal. The beauty of this model is that it is tailored to the unique needs of the learner.
The program is free to all permanent residents over 18 in the Redlands and learners can continue as long as they feel it is helping them.
This program is modelled on similar programs run by libraries all over the world, and some closer to home on the Sunshine Coast in Noosa, in Logan City and on the Gold Coast. Redland Libraries would like to thank colleagues from these regions for their support and advice and working collaboratively towards a shared goal of lifelong learning. Special thanks must also go to the Reading Writing Hotline and the 26ten co-ordinators in Tasmania.
The launch of this program is an exciting time for Redland Libraries as we see people in the community empowered to reach their full potential.
If you would like further information call: 07 3843 84000.
The Redland Libraries Adult Literacy Program will be launched to the community on
Monday 3 September at 10am at Cleveland Library. All welcome.