Funding boost to local literacy programs will help people get the skills they need, say Richmond NDP MLAs

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RICHMOND – NDP MLAs Henry Yao, Aman Singh and Kelly Greene say a funding boost to community-based adult and family literacy programs in Richmond will help people gain skills in reading, writing, math, and digital literacy.

“Literacy and numeracy skills are essential for a fulfilling and prosperous future in Canada. From applying for a job to reading medication instructions, literacy and numeracy skills help Canadians access opportunities in life,” said Yao, MLA for Richmond South Centre. “These programs help to break down barriers and enrich the lives of people here in Richmond.”

Literacy Richmond received $18,834.69 in funding for their “Learning Together” program aimed at families, and $10,369.09 in funding for their “Literacy for Life” program which serves adult learners.

“Having challenges with reading and writing as an adult can bring up feelings of shame and stigma – but people should know that they aren’t alone, and it’s never too late to learn something new,” said Greene, MLA for Richmond-Steveston. “Improving your reading, writing, or math skills is an investment in yourself and your family that will pay off for generations.”

“By helping families to improve their literacy skills together, we are unlocking huge potential,” said Singh, MLA for Richmond-Queensborough. “When parents are more confident helping their kids with reading and homework, kids are set up for greater success at school and parents can work towards their own career goals.”

The New Democrat government is investing $2.9 million in the Community Adult Literacy Program which includes a one-time investment for 2021-22. This support will fund 97 programs, delivered by 66 organizations in 128 communities throughout the province.

Community based Indigenous, adult and family literacy programs are provided free of charge and delivered by community organizations, Indigenous-led organizations, and public-post secondary institutions. Literacy programming typically includes one-on-one tutoring and small-group instruction which supports all levels of literacy. In 2020, many programs shifted to online service delivery in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.