Literacy hits the streets in Cranbrook

Black Press, Columbia Basin Alliance for Literacy gearing up for 4th annual Reach A Reader campaign.

Community leaders and volunteers will join Black Press and the Columbia Basin Alliance for Literacy on October 9th to raise awareness about the importance of literacy and to celebrate the power literacy has in Cranbrook.

The 4th Annual Reach a Reader campaign will raise funds for Cranbrook’s community-based literacy programs.

Why? Literacy is important to all British Columbians! It impacts every aspect of our lives: healthcare, crime rates, employment and economic status. Despite its essential role in life, at least 40 per cent of B.C. adults have difficulty reading a newspaper, filling out a work application, reading a map, or understanding a lease – and this percentage is increasing.

“The Reach a Reader campaign reminds everyone that literacy skills are important if we are to succeed in today’s world,” says Katherine Hough, Cranbrook Community Literacy Coordinator.

“When we hear the word literacy many of us think ‘you can read or you can’t read.’ Of course literacy is about reading and writing but it is also about the ability to express our ideas, think critically, and use technology. Literacy is wide and all-encompassing. Literacy is having the skills you need, to do what you want to do in your life.”

In Cranbrook funds will help support the Young Parents Education Program. This program helps parents who have not completed grade 12 and who have pre-school aged children to obtain their high school diploma as well as achieve parenting, life and work skills. The lives of both parent and child are improved as they learn to advocate for themselves, increase their capabilities and transition to improved employment opportunities or higher education. One young parent was so motivated that she continued to read her textbook while in labour! She is now in university with lots of possibilities ahead of her.

You can support the Reach a Reader campaign by making a donation in exchange for a special edition of the Cranbrook Daily Townsman or the Advertiser on October 9. Volunteers will be hitting the streets with papers in hand between 9:30 am and 2:30 pm.  You may also donate online at cbal.org.

To learn more about community-based literacy programs in Cranbrook contact Katherine Hough, Cranbrook’s Community Literacy Coordinator, at khough@cbal.org.

About Columbia Basin Alliance for Literacy:

The Columbia Basin Alliance for Literacy (CBAL) is a not-for-profit organization that develops, promotes and delivers literacy and essential skills services for people of all ages in the Columbia Basin and Boundary regions.

CBAL’s 16 Community Literacy Coordinators provide services in 77 communities, working with local literacy advisory committees to develop effective literacy programs and resources in the communities they serve.