Literacy Action Corps looks to increase volunteers

Tuesday, August 17, 2010 | 7:39 p.m. CDT; updated 1:01 p.m. CDT, Tuesday, August 24, 2010

COLUMBIA — In 1994, President Bill Clinton stated “literacy is not a luxury, it is a right and a responsibility.”  This September, the Literacy Action Corps of Columbia is looking for volunteers to help advocate that belief.

“It is so rewarding, and the students are so appreciative,” said Mary Lu Parks, head of public relations for the corps and a volunteer of eight years. The group has 68 volunteers teaching this year but they could use more help, she added.

According to the National Assessment for Adult Literacy, more than 40 million Americans age 16 and older have significant literacy needs.

Dell Keepers and Treva Kintner founded the corps in 1968. The goal of the corps is to teach adults to read and write using a phonetic approach developed in the late 1920s by missionary worker Frank Laubach. Through one-on-one tutoring, students and teachers work together toward a level where the student is ready to work independently.

In order to volunteer, the group is asking potential tutors to call 573-442-4280 and leave a message to receive a registration form. The next training session will be Sept. 14 at the First Baptist Church, 1112 E. Broadway.

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