5 Things | Literacy Council of Chelan & Douglas Counties

During the 2014-2015 program year, Crunch Pak employees met with tutor Maggie McManus at the United Methodist Church in Cashmere.

My name is Kay Loeffler and I am the tutor coordinator at the Literacy Council of Chelan and Douglas Counties. I taught English as a Second Language in South Africa for two years and trained tutors to teach ESL in South Africa, Malawi, Morocco and in the United States. When I came home to Wenatchee I wondered how I could use my training and experience. About that time, I saw an ad in the Wenatchee World for a position at the Literacy Council. It was actually an AmeriCorps position. I got the job and have been here three years now. Two years with AmeriCorps and one as staff. I love my job and have a passion not only for teaching ESL but for helping others teach. Our volunteers are great people, from all walks of life. Retired teachers, politicians, orchard workers, homemakers, students, we have them all. Like our students from all walks of life and degrees of education, our tutors are diverse. This job is very rewarding and fun, not just for me but for all of our volunteers as well.

1. The Literacy Council is non-profit organization under the umbrella of the Chelan-Douglas Community Action Council. We connect community volunteers with adults who need help with basic reading, writing, and spelling skills, as well as those who need help learning English as a Second Language. We train volunteers and give them all the support they need with ideas and resources. Volunteers do not need to speak a foreign language or have teaching experience. The time with students is fun and very rewarding. Our students are all adults and know what they want to learn, which helps with lesson planning. The classes are small, one on one or up to six students per tutor maximum. Volunteers make friends and influence lives while contributing to the ongoing improvement of our community.

2. Literacy Council has free volunteer training. During the academic year, we have a tutor training every six weeks; it is held Friday night (to be announced) from 6 until 8 p.m. and on Saturday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. A free lunch is provided. Each training is usually set for about 15 volunteers.

3. Our classes run continuously throughout the year. Because we match tutors to students and form classes depending on volunteer and student availability, we sometimes have classes that stay together for years. Other classes only continue for the minimum 45 hours of instruction.

4. You can find us on Facebook and our website: www.literacycouncilcd.org

5. We serve Chelan, Douglas and Grant counties. We have classes in Leavenworth, Entiat, Cashmere, East Wenatchee, Quincy, Royal City and Wenatchee.

We need volunteers! We need people who are willing to give an hour and a half, twice a week, for at least 45 hours. They need to be at least 18 years old or older; can attend a training; and speak English well. We would also appreciate any monetary donations. We have a wish list posted on our website. THANK YOU!