Funding shortfall halts Literacy Victoria programs

A lack of funding is forcing a Victoria organization that taught hundreds of adults to read free of charge to suspend its activities effective Aug. 31.

Literacy Victoria has been operating for 26 years, offering tutoring to adults who’ve slipped through the cracks of education, suffered brain injuries or found themselves unemployable because of illiteracy.

article continues below

“It’s a terribly difficult decision,” Susan Reece, vice-chairwoman of Literacy Victoria’s board of directors, said on Wednesday.

Funding has come from various sources such as the provincial government, United Way, Victoria Foundation and the Times Colonist book drive. Funding cuts have made it impossible for Literacy Victoria to continue in its present form, Reece said.

A workable annual budget of $225,000 is impossible to fund, so the options are to either go bankrupt or shut down temporarily and find other sources, she said.

“We need more [money] than what we’re getting,” she said.

The funds go toward paying rent for their premises at 930 Yates St. where the free tutoring takes place and paying a small staff.

Literacy Victoria has an outreach program that includes tutoring for inmates at the Vancouver Island Regional Correctional Centre, a bookmobile for the homeless and a mobile computer lab.

“At the end of the day, there just isn’t enough money to pay our bills for anything other than the short term,” she said.

Learning to read allows adults to find employment and build esteem that they couldn’t do through any other skill, she said.

By suspending operations temporarily, Reece said the directors hope new funding sources can be found and the society can return in some fashion to provide literacy programs.

Read Related Topics

© Copyright Times Colonist

Comments

NOTE: To post a comment you must have an account with at least one of the following services: Disqus, Facebook, Twitter, Google+ You may then login using your account credentials for that service. If you do not already have an account you may register a new profile with Disqus by first clicking the "Post as" button and then the link: "Don't have one? Register a new profile".

The Times Colonist welcomes your opinions and comments. We do not allow personal attacks, offensive language or unsubstantiated allegations. We reserve the right to edit comments for length, style, legality and taste and reproduce them in print, electronic or otherwise. For further information, please contact the editor or publisher, or see our Terms and Conditions.

comments powered by Disqus

Find out what's happening in your community.

Most Popular