Friday, October 18, 2013

A great organization (Mid-Valley Literacy Center) Needs Your Help

A friend sends:

I don't know if you are aware of my involvement in the non-profit Mid-Valley Literacy Center in Keizer(  I began volunteering there last November, and since then have been maintaining their student computers. The staff and students are wonderful, appreciative people.

During this last year the Center was able to train 69 new volunteer tutors and open 6 new tutoring sites.  We now have over 150 volunteer tutors working with 600 students in four counties.  The tutors provided 19,171 hours of instruction enabling adults to improve their English skills, and obtain their GED certificate in English or Spanish. Ten students have just passed the Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA) class and will be taking their State Board Exams in two weeks.  All of these students have full-time jobs waiting for them at the Providence Benedictine Nursing Center in Mt. Angel.  If you know any adults who need to improve their English skills or prepare for the GED certificate, please feel free to look at the Center web site for more information about classes to help them.  

The Center was started by two ex-Chemeketa employees when Chemeketa cancelled their tutoring program about four years ago.  You may know Vivian Ang or Debra Gaul.  Two more passionate people helping people, you will not find...well, maybe me, but I'm too modest to say so.

Statistics show that at least 50% of the unemployed are functionally illiterate and it is estimated that limited literacy skills cost business and tax payers $20 billion in lost wages, profits, and productivity annually.  Of course, these statistics do not speak to how one feels by not being able to read to their children or even make change at the grocery store.

This email isn't just a story about my volunteer time.  It's about me asking for your help.  The Center does not receive state or federal funding, but operates almost entirely on grants and donations from people like you and it is struggling. 

Every term, $70 will help two adults prepare for the GED or improve their computer skills; $50 will prepare two adults for entry level medical careers; and $25 will help one student improve their English skills each term.

In September, the Center will be having a 100 hole "golf marathon."  I'm not sure how this works, but I hear the rules are "adjusted" a little.  Anyway, I have pledged $1 per hole for myself ($100) and have reluctantly said I would ask my friends and family if they would match my pledge.  I say reluctantly because I hate asking for donations, and I don't think you have ever heard me do so before.  I feel strongly about this non-profit organization, and have seen what the Center can do. 

(He did it, in fact, and I kicked in $100 to match it -- there's still time for you to step up too!)

So here I am with hat in hand asking for your support.  Of course, I would gladly accept a pledge of more than $1 per hole or any other pledge you feel comfortable making. Since this is a 501(c)(3) organization, your contribution is tax deductible.

Please let me know your response. Otherwise I may just stop by your house and then it gets uncomfortable.  I will graciously accept "no way Jose" as an answer as I have said that plenty of times myself, but if you can see your way to help, I will jump up and down in your name.

Thanks for reading this email. I'm sorry it was so lengthy, but there is a lot to say about the Center.

P.S.  The Center could also use all sorts of tutors or office help.  And you would get to see more of me !!

Let's live on the planet as if we intend to stay

BOYCOTT Nestle, Pepsi, Coke and all their kin

Just read the amazing book "Salt, Sugar, Fat" -- now, no surprise, the same amoral forces that have made diabetes, heart disease, and obesity into pandemics are pumping massive rivers of money to deny Washington residents the opportunity to demand what all Europe has: the right to know when they're being served genetically tampered phood instead of real food.  They sell products carefully designed to addict, and then want to cover their tracks so you can't hold them accountable for their corrupt ways.

If genetic tampering is so great, why are they so afraid of putting it on the label?

Let's live on the planet as if we intend to stay