The 26th Annual Spelling Bee Team Registration Open Now!

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Calling all bibliophiles, word-nerds, and linguists…
The Spelling Bee is back for its 26th year!

Save the Date

salvagestation-logoThe 26th Annual Spelling Bee benefiting the Literacy Council of Buncombe County will be held Wednesday April 5, 2017 at The Salvage Station, 6-9pm 

10 Purchase Audience Ticket

*Please Note: Team Registration is now closed.

Recruit two friends to complete your team and sign up to compete in the most spirited and outrageous word challenge of your lives. Choose your teammates carefully — they must have both spelling and concentration skills in order to disregard the pandemonium caused by a costumed, cheering audience.

How does it work?

  • Recruit two friends and register your team by calling 828-254-3442 or emailing luann@litcouncil.com. Once you register, you’ll get a team packet that includes event rules, study materials, and fundraising suggestions
  • Choose your team name and plan costumes (optional, but there are prizes for best costume!)
  • Study the word list provided
  • Raise funds online or make a personal donation to cover your team’s entry fee 
  • Encourage your own personal cheering squad to come and support your team

Why participate?

  • It’s fun! Unleash your inner geek and join us for a zany, raucous good time
  • With comedian David Ostergaard as the emcee, you’ll be laughing the entire evening
  • You can cheat! Teams that raise funds over the entry fee can pilfer another team’s word or purchase clues
  • The top finishers win generous prizes, but no one walks away empty-handed. Every speller receives a prize
  • Your team could be crowned “Best Spellers in Buncombe County!”

How much does it cost?

Teams contribute a collective $250 to participate. Most of our teams raise this amount (and more) through friends, coworkers, family members, and others. We will provide access to CrowdRise, a fun and easy-to-use fundraising web site. Even little donations add up to a cheat-worthy stash! We can also offer some pointers on using social media to reach more people who want to support literacy. You have until the day of the event to raise the funds.

Who is involved?

The Spelling Bee committee is hard at work with the Literacy Council’s staff, planning an unBEElievable event. This year’s volunteer committee is being spearheaded by celebrity restaurateur Joe Scully, 2016 Top Fundraiser Katherine Cross, former speller Lauren Harr and more. 

Let’s get serious for a moment.

The Literacy Council of Buncombe County works to increase comprehensive literacy and English language skills through specialized instruction by trained tutors and access to literacy resources. In 2015/16, 200 volunteer tutors gave over 14,000 hours of direct literacy tutoring to 350 students. We work with both native and non-native English speakers to help improve job prospects, ensure parents can help their children in school, and give students support as they enroll in a GED program. The gift of literacy is truly transformative. Our students gain self-confidence and develop the self-sufficiency to improve their lives as individuals, parents, workers, and citizens. As always, proceeds from the Spelling Bee benefit the work of the Literacy Council of Buncombe County.

Are you eager to compete?

We will limit the competition to 15 teams, so be sure to reserve your spot by contacting LuAnn today.

Email luann@litcouncil.com or call 828-254-3442 ext. 206

Want to support a team? Click here! 
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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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