Nelson was born in Cuba and came to Harrisonburg several years ago. In Cuba Nelson worked in the medical profession. Here in Harrisonburg he is employed as a dishwasher and janitor. He feels fortunate to have both jobs.
At the beginning of the year, Nelson was working hard at Skyline Literacy to improve his speaking, reading, and writing. For an older adult, learning a language as difficult as English is a challenging task. By the spring Nelson was able to enroll in a citizenship class at Skyline. He was also matched with a tutor and the two began working together, studying the material and practicing for the citizenship test and interview. In September Nelson passed his test and in November he took his oath as a new citizen of the United States. He said it was the “most beautiful” day of his life.
Your donations help people like Nelson improve their literacy skills so they can have better lives for themselves and their families!
It’s sad but true that there are many adults struggling with very poor speaking, reading, and writing skills in Virginia, but did you know here in our community…
- many Harrisonburg/Rockingham County residents with low English skills live below the poverty level
- low literacy skills in parents often result in lower test scores for their children
- 23% of Rockingham County residents age 25 and older do not have a high school diploma
- more women struggle with low literacy skills than men
I’ve shared the success story of one community resident Skyline was able to help in 2011. There are over 300 more who came to Skyline to learn English, improve reading and writing, or study for citizenship. They came to learn the skills that would allow them to find jobs, provide for their family, be better parents, and be more engaged community members.
Skyline will begin 2012 with over 50 people on our waiting list, all with similar hopes and dreams to Nelson.
A donation this year of $500 would help a struggling reader work with a tutor for an entire year. A gift of $250 would allow ten people to attend a citizenship class. I ask you to consider giving as generously as you can this year. However, please know that every gift, whatever the amount, will help to bring hope to one or more of our learners in 2012.
Posted on December 26, 2011