Communities & Society — the challenges for non-profit human service agencies
Like all communities in our nation, here in the Sarasota area human service agencies need to help ensure that their clients have at minimum a high school-level education and strong English communication skills so that they can improve their chances for better employment and get ahead in life. These basic education and communication skills are essential for self-sufficiency, empowerment, and the ability to thrive.
- 43% of adults with the lowest literacy levels live in poverty.1
- $232 billion a year in health care costs is linked to low adult literacy skills.2
- 75% of state prison inmates did not complete high school or can be classified as low literate.3
Research shows that gains in literacy and English communication skills impact the lives of individuals in many positive ways. Human service agencies benefit by having clients:
- achieve independence without relying on public assistance programs (e.g. TANF, Food Stamps, etc.)
- obtain a job or a better-paying job
- lead healthier lives
- manage their health and access quality health care when they need it
- succeed in society
- exercise their rights (e.g., voting) as citizens
Clients’ Low Education – the daily challenge for your clients:
- Busy with one or more jobs and family life, most adults with low literacy and/or low English communication skills do not have the time, financial resources and/or transportation needed to ‘go back to school’ at traditional, fixed-site adult schools or colleges that have set schedules during the week.
- In addition, local academic institutions typically have curriculum-based education (i.e. one size fits all), whereas adults with low literacy and/or low English communication skills more often respond better with an individualized, needs-based educational approach.
How Can We Help You?
LCS has a number of advantages over traditional institutional educational services. Local educational institutions have fixed locations, set schedules during the week, and fees/tuition – those interested must go to their location in order to be served. No exceptions.
The Literacy Council of Sarasota offers an alternative to the traditional fixed-site, set schedule, fees/tuition, and one-size-fits-all curriculum approach with adults. We provide educational services on-site at your location; where adults already are during the day, on their timeline, at no cost to them (the non-profit is sponsoring), and that addresses their real-life, every day educational and literacy needs.
By providing educational services on-site, adult learners are able to attend conveniently located classes held at a place with which they are familiar and that they trust.
1. (Source: National Center for Education Statistics)
2. (Source: American Journal of Public Health)
3. (Source: Rand Report: Evaluating the Effectiveness of Correctional Education)