BY AMAN SINGH
NDP MLA for Richmond-Queensborough
LITERACY and numeracy are critical skills for success at work and in life. More people will have an opportunity to write the next pages of their lives with help from the Community Adult Literacy Program (CALP). As part of this program, our government provides annual funding to a range of adult learning programs which help participants improve literacy, math and digital skills in 128 communities across the province.
Many of us take literacy skills for granted, but an estimated 700,000 people in the province have significant challenges with reading, writing, math, and digital skills. I am proud that our government is supporting people to succeed. That is why we are increasing funding to this program by $500,000 and investing a total of $3.4 million annually so that people across the province can gain essential skills that will give them more confidence in reading, writing, math and using a computer at work, school, and in their own life.
By increasing literacy and numeracy proficiencies among adults, we are helping people meet the increasing demands of the labour market while meeting the individual needs of adult learners, including Indigenous people, newcomers, and people with disabilities.
These locally run programs support people from all walks of life and from all different backgrounds no matter where they might be in their literacy journey. The programs are delivered in the community rather than formal classrooms, so students feel at home and comfortable in their surroundings.
The grants will be used by community organizations, Indigenous-led organizations, and public post-secondary institutions to help as many folks as we can and make sure none fall through the cracks. We are working to reduce institutional barriers that remain for people in our diverse province.
Skills in literacy are not limited to the individual but can also benefit the entire family. When parents feel confident in their own skills, they are in a better position to help their children with homework and develop a lifelong love of reading.
The Community Adult Literacy Program provides an opportunity for adults to invest in their skills to not only benefit themselves but their entire families. By upskilling today, people will be more prepared for the jobs of tomorrow.