MD Needs Volunteers to Teach Adults to Read

Have some spare time? Please consider helping an adult learn to read. Literacy volunteers are needed increasingly in Baltimore City, Baltimore County, and throughout Maryland, not just in the DC suburbs mentioned in the following Washington Post article.

Maryland communities are seeing a growing need for volunteer tutors to help adults read and write, with an increased demand from immigrants who struggle with English and native-born residents who left school without fully mastering the skills.

In Montgomery County, the local literacy council has about 600 tutors but needs an additional 200 to 300. The county is home to about half of Maryland’s foreign-born population and has residents from 86 countries.

In Prince George’s County, the literacy council has about 55 tutors and a waiting list of students who want instruction. Demand has also increased in Charles County and other Maryland jurisdictions.

The free services throughout the state rely on volunteers, who are trained by the local councils and usually work one-on-one with students. The tutoring sessions often are held in local libraries.

The programs are aimed not only at those for whom English is not their first language but also at native-born adults who need help in reading and writing to fill out forms or read instructions and other materials at work.

… The need is also acute in Charles, said Marlene Cleaveland, head of that county’s literacy council, via e-mail. “The need is growing because of the influx of a more diverse population in Charles County,” she said.

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