Tuesday, September 22, 2015
Celebrate Adult Education & Family Literacy Week 2015
Weak English Can Prevent Calling 911
Thousands of Montgomery County Adults
Await English Language Training
Montgomery Coalition for Adult English Literacy Will Distribute $950,000 in Grants for Education
Adult Education & Family Literacy Week is Sept. 21-26
ROCKVILLE, MD – September 22, 2015 – More than 80,000 adults in Montgomery County lack the English skills to be self-sufficient. They may not be able to call 911 in an emergency, complete a job application, talk with a child’s teacher, speak with a doctor or read a prescription. But help is available through the Montgomery Coalition for Adult English Literacy (MCAEL).
MCAEL is a community coalition of public, nonprofit, and business partners that support more than 60 adult ESOL (English for Speakers of Other Languages) and literacy service programs, 1,500 instructors and staff, and over 20,000 adult learners. During Adult Education & Family Literacy Week Sept. 21-26, MCAEL is highlighting the need for English literacy in Montgomery County and the many resources and opportunities its network provides for learning and teaching, including computer literacy and health literacy for adults of all ages. MCAEL and its member groups provide a resource directory, instruction and teacher training.
Nearly a Million in Grants
For the 2015-2016 year, MCAEL will distribute $950,000 in grants to support adult English literacy programs across Montgomery County. Funding for the grants is provided in partnership with the Montgomery County Government, with the support of County Executive Ike Leggett and the Montgomery County Council. MCAEL has supported 17 organizations representing 22 programs. Community-based organizations funded through MCAEL grants have served approximately 15,000 adult English language learners since 2008.
“English literacy is the foundation for our community’s economic and social prosperity,” said Kathy Stevens, executive director of MCAEL. “Adults with greater literacy skills can earn more, better support their children’s education and participate in civic life. As a result, we all benefit from greater tax contributions, a more educated population and a more connected community.”
Awareness Week Activities
Every dollar invested in adult education returns $3.15 in economic benefit to the community, Stevens said. In observance of Adult Education and Family Literacy Week, MCAEL is teaming up to raise funds with two restaurants, California Tortilla and Ben & Jerry’s at 199 E. Montgomery Ave., Rockville. On September 24 from 5-8 p.m., a percentage of each of these restaurants’ proceeds will be donated to MCAEL. MCAEL will also sell awareness week t-shirts online at http://teespring.com/stores/mcael-event-ts.
In addition, MCAEL welcomes new volunteers to teach the thousands of Montgomery County adults on waiting lists for English instruction. “Our learners have a great sense of achievement, often becoming citizens or getting better jobs. Along the way, they often develop wonderful relationships with our instructors, who are gratified to see the progress of our neighbors across Montgomery County.” Stevens said.
More information about volunteering or finding English language learning opportunities is at www. MCAEL.org