NDP MLAs Dan Coulter and Kelli Paddon say people in Chilliwack will have more opportunities to improve their literacy, math and digital skills as the provincial government provides $3.4 million in new funding for Community Adult Literacy Programs (CALP).
Chilliwack Community Services and the Chilliwack Learning Society have offerings provided by trained volunteers that focus on basic literacy, numeracy, life skills and employment preparation, and can be a starting point towards high school completion and/or further education or training.
“For many people, tasks like paying bills online, trying a recipe from a cookbook, or updating their resume for new work opportunities seem simple, but not everyone has the same experience,” said Coulter, MLA for Chilliwack, in a government news release. “Many adults struggle with literacy, and it can make little things that many of us take for granted a challenge. Literacy programs help make sure all British Columbians have the opportunity to navigate the world we live in with more ease.”
The NDP government invests annually in CALP, which is designed to help British Columbians, newcomers, work permit holders and refugee claimants improve their reading, writing, math and digital skills. Literacy programming typically includes one-on-one tutoring and small-group instruction.
An estimated 700,000 people in British Columbia have significant challenges with literacy, numeracy and digital literacy.
This new annual funding builds on the $2.9 million invested in 2021-22 and will support 97 programs delivered by 66 organizations in 128 communities.
“Literacy programs are just one of the amazing things that our local community services societies have to offer residents,” said Chilliwack-Kent MLA Kelli Paddon. “I’m glad our government understands the importance of programs like these for people — whether they are new to speaking English or face challenges with reading, writing or digital literacy.”