A letter to our community — valuing diversity through education

A  Literacy Council student celebrates passing the US Naturalization exam

A  Literacy Council student celebrates passing the US Naturalization exam

To our Buncombe County neighbors,

The Literacy Council of Buncombe County values people of all ages, races, religions, national and ethnic origins, abilities and disabilities, sexual orientations, and gender identities. Our staff and board are committed to creating opportunities for all people in Buncombe County to receive high-quality educational services. We honor the gifts that our diverse students and volunteers bring to our community.

In the month of November, we received inquiries from 50 people wanting to become volunteer tutors. This is twice the number we would typically receive over the course of a month. This tells us that people in our community honor and value literacy and English language education and want to help our students achieve their goals.

We are grateful to live and work in such a supportive community.

With great respect,
Literacy Council of Buncombe County

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Donate this holiday season to change a student’s life

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This time of year, many of us look forward to preparing our favorite dishes and sharing them with loved ones. But, can you imagine what cooking would be like if all of the ingredients looked like the can to the left? Where would you begin? Would you feel anxious? How would your dish taste?

For English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) students at the Literacy Council, this is a daily reality. These students desperately want to learn English so they can participate fully in their new home community.

For adults and children struggling with a learning difference like dyslexia, a holiday card from a loved one could look like the example to the right. How would you feel if you received a letter that looked like this? Would you be ashamed that you did not understand what it said? Would you feel the love they expressed? Adult Education students at the Literacy Council are courageously giving reading and writing another chance in order to connect with family and better navigate the world around them.

Please make a donation to Literacy Council this holiday season. Your gift will be used to match 350 ESOL, Adult Education, and Augustine Project students with trained volunteer tutors. In the coming year, these students will improve their ability to navigate grocery stores, read mail, and so much more. Next year’s holidays will look very different for these students, thanks to your support.

Donate Now

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Make a Difference Day

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In honor of Make a Difference Day, the Literacy Council of Buncombe County partnered with the Leicester Community Center to provide a wide selection of free books to community members living in rural areas. Participants were able to take home as many books as they wanted, with options that included board books for toddlers, early readers, chapter books, and even bestselling paperbacks for adults! 

mannaThe books were an addition to the free produce and perishable items that are offered at the Leicester Community Center on the third Tuesday of each month as part of MANNA’s Food Distribution initiative. MANNA provides goods such as bread, bakery items, and seasonal produce. This month lots of butternut squash, spaghetti squash, and root vegetables lined the tables.

For more information on food distribution or services offered at the Leicester Community Center, please contact them at:

Leicester Community Center
PO Box 1518
2979 New Leicester Highway
Leicester, NC 28748
828-774-3000
http://www.leicestercommunitycenter.com/home 

Make a Difference Day is an event that began in 1992 as an idea for a national day of service and has since transformed into one of the largest, annual, single days of service nationwide! With the intent of showing that anyone, regardless of background, is able to make on impact on their community, Make a Difference Day has resulted in thousands of projects taking place on the fourth Saturday of October each year. 

Many national projects have focused on pressing global issues, such as:

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  • Disaster Relief
  • Disability
  • Domestic Abuse
  • Education/tutoring/mentoring 
  • Unemployment
  • Environment
  • Healthcare
  • Homelessness
  • Housing 
  • Hunger
  • Poverty

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Part-Time ESOL AmeriCorps Position

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Are you looking for the opportunity to make a difference? The Literacy Council has an exciting opportunity to join our team for a year! Apply today to become the Literacy Council’s ESOL Assistant through AmeriCorps.

Apply Here

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Join AmeriCorps and “get things done”! Become a NC LiteracyCorps member at the Literacy Council of Buncombe County and improve literacy and English language skills in our community.

NC LiteracyCorps members provide literacy tutoring to youth and adults while building program capacity through volunteer tutor management and support. The ESOL Assistant LiteracyCorps member will have the opportunity to:

Promote ESOL Student Success

  • Complete the English for Speakers of Other Languages tutor training
  • Become a tutor for at least one small group class
  • Act as a substitute tutor for small group classes when necessary
  • Conduct student orientations and intake testing for students in small groups
  • Communicate with students and/or tutors when they have missed classes, need to reschedule sessions, or need to be added to the waiting list
  • Assist in developing community partnerships to build a support system for students
  • Work with the ESOL Program Director to promote use of the computer lab

Provide Tutor Support

  • Assist with tutor appreciation events
  • Work with the ESOL Program Director to plan in-service trainings
  • Assist tutors with checking out and making copies of learning materials

Increase Community Awareness

  • Collaborate with community organizations to assist with events involving volunteers
  • Participate in volunteer fairs 
  • Plan and implement national identity days

The Literacy Council’s NC LiteracyCorps member will begin in late September 2016 and complete their service year in July 2017. Over the course of the year, the member will become an integral part of the Literacy Council’s team, providing 900 hours of service.

AmeriCorps LogoBenefits to the Member

NC LiteracyCorps members receive a living allowance of up to $6,265 and qualify for limited health insurance reimbursements. Upon completion of requirements, they are eligible to receive an educational award of $2,887. NC LiteracyCorps members receive training in volunteer management, literacy issues, tutoring strategies, diversity, and leadership skills. The member placed with the Literacy Council will also have a professional development stipend to participate in conferences.

Qualifications

To serve with the NC LiteracyCorps, the member must:

  • be at least 17 years old
  • have a high school diploma or equivalent
  • successfully pass statewide and national criminal background checks
  • be a U.S. Citizen, National, or Legal Permanent Resident of the United States

Preferred qualifications are:

  • fluent in Spanish and English (required)
  • a deep commitment to providing educational opportunities to economically disadvantaged adults and those who are from other cultures
  • excellent interpersonal skills with the ability to work effectively with staff, volunteers, and members of the community
  • outstanding written and oral communication skills
  • a working knowledge of office technology including Microsoft Office suites
  • ability to work independently and collaboratively
  • creative, strategic thinker with excellent organizational skills and ability to track deadlines
  • available to work occasional evenings

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Auction Item Sneak Peek #2

Bee Sieburg- Clothesline

Bee Sieburg- Clothesline

Bee Sieburg was one of many artists who participated in the Visual Word show at Broken Roads Studios in August to benefit the Literacy Council. Each work was accompanied by a spoken word piece, poem, or story.

Bee’s painting, “Clothesline,” was accompanied by a poem her son George wrote. We are so honored that Bee and George have generously donated their collaborative work to the Authors for Literacy Silent Auction.

See more of Bee Sieburg’s work here.

Preview Additional Auction Items

Regardless of personal tastes or styles, Authors for Literacy guests will find something to pique their interest at the 2016 silent auction. 

Bonaventure CemeteryTRAVEL

A Savannah Getaway package including a hotel stay, passes to Savannah College of Art & Design Museum of Art, and Mercer House Museum passes.

 

RhubarbDINING

Sunday Supper for Four at Rhubarb

 

 

Asheville Lyric OperaENTERTAINMENT

Two tickets to Asheville Lyric Opera

 

 

 

Magic KingdomEXPERIENCES

Four one-day Walt Disney World Park-Hopper Passes

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Books LITERATURE

Staff Picks: A collection of favorite books hand picked by each Literacy Council staff member

 

 

Moon Over Pisgah - Mary CostelloFINE ART

“Moon Over Pisgah”  by Mary Costello

 

 

 

Fiber Visions Joanna WhiteWEARABLE ART

Fiber Visions…Art to Wear by Joanna White

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Kim Thompson Jewelry

JEWELRY

Rainforest Collection: Sterling Silver earrings by Kim Thompson

 

 

 

 

 

For more information or to purchase tickets by phone, contact LuAnn Arena at 828-254-3442 x206 or email: luann@litcouncil.com

Purchase tickets online

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