Ten Facts about Community Literacy Agencies
There are over 200 literacy delivery agencies, and over 300 delivery sites in Ontario that work to provide all four streams of literacy delivery: Anglophone, Francophone, Deaf and Native. Literacy agencies aim to direct students to the most suitable program, and to collaborate and share information and resources.
A 2005-2006 IMS (Information Management System) survey revealed that there were 140 community-based delivery programs and 24 additional satellite programs throughout the province.
According to a 2003 CLO survey, 38% of community-based literacy agencies were rural, 28% mixed rural/urban areas, 19% served small urban areas and 14% served large urban centers. 27% of agencies were located in central Ontario; 19% in the east, 21% in the northeast; 11% in the northwest; and 22% in the southwest. Community-based literacy agencies are diverse and far-reaching.
The majority of the adult learners served at community-based agencies (59%) have low level literacy (levels 1 and 2).
A 2005 CLO survey revealed that 92% of Ontario’s community literacy agencies offer both one-to-one and small group programming. 50% of adult learners participated in one-on-one programs, while the other 50% participated in small group programs.
A 2007-2008 IMS (Information Management System) survey revealed that learners in the Ontario area seek to become independent (21%), further their education and training (40%), or obtain employment (39%).
A 2007 CLO survey revealed that the average community-based agency in Ontario has 65 volunteers. The volunteers help with board governance, fundraising and tutoring.
Community-based literacy agencies market their programs and services to community partners, employers, service clubs and social service organizations. Agencies attend community fairs, fundraisers, promotional events and offer community presentations.
Community-based literacy agencies develop strong partnerships in their respective communities. A 2003 CLO survey revealed that 90% of agencies partnered with other local community agencies, 77% with Ontario Works, 66% with local referral agencies, 50% with local service clubs and 45% with local employers. The same survey showed that agencies received additional funding from: the local community (63%); local businesses (44%) and the United Way (31%).
Community-based literacy agencies are not-for-profit organizations, governed by a Board of Directors. They meet the needs of adult learners in supportive environments. Commitment to programming, flexibility and guidance are the keys to adult learners' success.
Ten Key Facts About Community Literacy Agencies (2009, April). Retrieved from http://www.communityliteracyofontario.ca/literacy-in-ontario-2/ten-key-facts/
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