What We Do

Literacy Network teaches reading, writing and speaking skills to Dane County adults and families so they can achieve financial independence, good health and greater involvement in community life. Literacy Network’s learner-driven and volunteer-supported education model is effective and efficient, costing less than $20 per instructional hour. In 2013, 1,041 volunteers served nearly 30,000 hours with Literacy Network.

Who We Serve

In 2013, more than 1,100 adults received services from Literacy Network.

Building a More Capable Community

Creating Employment Opportunities

As the leader of the United Way’s HIRE Education Employment Initiative, we help adults find new opportunities through reading, writing and communication skills.

“This class is very helpful because we are here to learn something for the future. We want to communicate with American people and understand things, and, you know, it’s not easy.” – Juan Gomez, Owner and operator of an auto mechanic shop on Park Street.

Supporting Education

Parents become active partners in their children’s education. Parents understand the role of the school staff members, attend school functions, and help with their homework.

“I was able to go to my child’s school and talk to the teacher about a problem. I was able to make myself understood and I could understand what the teacher was saying, too.” – A member of the class at Goodman South Madison Library.

Enhancing Health

Our programs in hospitals and clinics improve understanding of health information and help learners make appropriate use of the healthcare system.

“I learned when to call 911- when my life or another life is in danger. I learned how to communicate with the doctor or nurse and how to make an appointment.” – Shuzhou Lin.

Building Skills, Meeting Needs

Literacy Network learner hours have increased nearly 10 times in the last decade, while our space has remained the same.

To meet growing community needs, Literacy Network must add resources for more space, technology and programs. Physical expansion will significantly increase Literacy Network’s impact, and will enhance our ability to engage with partners to serve those who need us.

Learner hours are up by 18.8% in just one year.

Adult learners increased workplace skills, earned citizenship, supported their children’s education, engaged with the healthcare system and more.

Educational opportunities are limited by classroom space. 

Volunteer hours are up by 10.5%

These service hours represent an in-kind value of more than $821,000.

There is no office space for additional staff to coordinate their efforts.

Volunteer hours have increased nearly ten times since 2001

With expanded space, we will double volunteer hours by 2016, and will facilitate continued growth in the number of learner hours.