Literacy Waitakere (Waitakere Adult Literacy Inc.) is a not-for-profit, registered charity which has been at the forefront of literacy provision in Waitakere for over 40 years.
We provide literacy tutoring to any adults in our region who meet our criteria: NZ residents, have few or no school qualifications, and who want to improve their reading, writing, spelling, numeracy and computer skills. Our tutors are specially trained, qualified and supported in the latest adult literacy tutoring techniques. Over 300 students attend our various sessions in West Auckland each year. We also offer programmes for groups with specific needs in their own environment, eg: workplace literacy.
Our organisation has a bi-cultural focus, and we endeavour to address the cultural needs of each student in order to make learning more accessible.
Workplace learners at the Fono, celebrating a great learning session
We have a manager, three coordinators, two administration staff, and twenty five part-time literacy tutors.
Students enjoy the friendly surroundings, their own student library and spacious learning rooms, including a computer learning suite.
A fully funded community organisation, Literacy Waitakere offers learning free to adults, catering for those in the community most in need of literacy tuition who meet our criteria. All our programmes are student-centred, which means students set their own goals and drive their individual learning plan. Tutors then design sessions to enable all the members of their learning groups achieve their goals. Learning takes place in small groups or one-to-one in an informal, friendly and supportive atmosphere.
Literacy Waitakere currently holds funding contracts for literacy provision through:
- Ministry of Social Development for vocational services for people with disabilities
- Specific workplace literacy and private provider contracts
Having gained confidence with reading, writing, spelling, maths and computer, students can then go on to attend vocational training, further study, unit standards for their work, drivers licence and enjoy a better understanding of and participation in their daily lives. Skills our students acquire may include the ability to fill out forms, which are found everywhere you go, to calculate discounts when shopping, to read maps, bus or train timetables, to read newsletters from school or other organisations they come into contact with, to read business letters from banks or power companies, for example, or to find information on the Internet. They learn to critically examine information they come into contact with, for example to distinguish marketing mail from informative letters, in order to make better decisions in their everyday lives.
In our rapidly changing world, improved literacy gives adults the confidence to help their children with their literacy, to move into employment of their choice, to improve their level of qualifications and to improve the economic prospects for themselves and their families.