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What is Illiteracy?

Literacy Council of Northern Virginia, Inc.
2855 Annandale Rd., Falls Church, Virginia 22042
(703) 237-0866


A Few Words From Our Tutors . . .

I have been tutoring Fatima for about three months now. Iím always amazed at how bright she is and how well sheís progressing. Tutoring is not only personally rewarding, but itís also challenging and a great way to develop my creative and communications skills. - Carol Cohen

The Literacy Council has given me the opportunity to teach as well as to learn. Garth is an outstanding student. His attitude and willingness brighten my day. - Dana Phillips

More than anything, Alice and I have fun learning. The rewarding part of teaching Alice is her enthusiasm for learning. This has spilled over to her two daughters, 7 and 4, who are avid readers and enjoy reading to me! - Gail Bamford

Student Success Stories

Ian Charles, at age 29 is learning to read. And as a result, he says, "Iím a totally different person. A lot of frustration is gone now, a lot of stress." Ian dropped out of school in the eleventh grade, and, after entering our program started his own business. As owner of Charlesí Limousine Service, Ian attributes a good deal of his success to learning how to read, an activity he enjoys sharing with his two young children. "I love words," states Ian, "I wish Iíd started reading earlier." Ianís inspirational life story was featured in the Washington Post Magazine on May 28, 1995.

Zainab Hussein, a Somali born in South Yemen, arrived in the United States as a refugee with her husband and two sons. Since entering our program in 1990, Zainab has obtained a child care providerís license, her driverís license and her green card. Zainab states, "Since coming to the Literacy Council, my life has gotten better. Finally, I say I am proud to be in this county which gave me and my family the opportunity to live in dignity and freedom and to practice my human rights. My goals are to learn how to read and write English and join those who care about the development of this great country."

Bobby Joe Small, has been a student with the Literacy Council of NorthernVirginia since 1991. Before Bobby Joe enrolled in the Basic Literacy program, he had received a total of three monthís schooling. "My family moved a lot," says Bobby Joe, "and it was embarrassing to be 10 or 12 and go to the first grade. My father told me that I didnít have to go to school." Learning reading, writing and math skills have opened new doors for Bobby Joe. "Itís a joy to be able to sit down at the table and study my lessons," he says. Bobby Joe takes great pleasure in writing letters to his family and friends. He has written his autobiography, "Gypsy In the Holy Spirit" and got his high school diploma.

To read more about our students, check out our student essay publication

Our Lives, Our Stories, which contains writings from 30 students who share their thoughts and personal experiences through stories, poems and personal histories. This publication is made possible by a grant from the Southland Corporationís Read to Achieve Program.

Literacy Council of Northern Virginia, Inc.Contact Information
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