If you’re in need of a bit of inspiration, I have a great suggestion for you.
Drop by the Brunner Literacy Center on Salem Avenue, and I guarantee you’ll be inspired by the ways in which lives are being transformed and dreams are being realized in this cheery homelike setting.
The Center, which opened in July 2011, is located in the old Rex Appliance store, 4825 Salem Ave., in the Salem Plaza. It’s supported by the Precious Blood parish and the Sisters of the Precious Blood. A St. Vincent’s thrift store is in the other half of the building.
The tables and chairs are filled with pairs deep in conversation and learning together. The free one-on-one tutoring is individualized for each client who walks through the door. All of the tutors volunteer their time and all of the services offered are always free of charge.
“A typical situation might involve someone who wants to learn how to read, wants to learn their ABCs, or wants to be able to fill out Medicaid forms or pass the test for citizenship,” program manager Barb Maloney said. “Our first client went through 10th grade but could only read two words in a pre-primer.”
Some of the clients are from other countries and are there to practice their English.
It all began when two retired educators — Sister Maryann Bremke and Sister Helen Weber, both Sisters of the Precious Blood —became concerned about the level of illiteracy in the area they call the “Salem Corridor” and Trotwood.
They determined to open a center where reading and basic math could be offered to anyone over the age of 18 who walked through the door with a dream of self-improvement.
These days, the Center offers everything from basic instruction in the use of computers to help in obtaining a GED. There’s ongoing evaluation of skills and a lending library. There were two clients when the Center first opened; over the years it has served more than 400.
Anyone can come to the center for help, and there’s always a need for volunteers.
“You don’t have to be Catholic and you don’t have to come from the Trotwood area,” said Sister Helen Weber. “People with literacy needs are all always welcome.”
Hours are flexible. If you don’t feel comfortable tutoring, there are other ways to be of help in the office or reception area.
The next training session for tutors — they last four hours — will be on Nov. 7.
Here’s what this non-profit can use:
- Cans of coffee
- Glade plug-ins
- Clorox wipes
- Gallons of vinegar
- Variety packs of hard candy, individually wrapped
- Bottled water
- Gift certificates to Kroger or other stores to purchase needed supplies
- Packs of RTA bus tokens
- Reams of 20 lb. paper
- Cassio scientific calculators
- Gift certificates to a teacher’s store
- Magazines and books for the lending library, including children’s picture books.
- The Center is open from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. Mondays through Thursday. It’s closed on Fridays and weekends.
- Those who want to donate money might want to keep in mind that the cost of one reading/text workbook is $18 and the cost of a series of four math text-workbooks is $52.
Here’s another way to help: There’s an “All Soles Run 2013” at Englewood Metro Park (West Park area) at 9 a.m. Saturday, Nov. 2. Entry fee is $30, and you can register at www.speedy-feet.com
For more information about the Brunner Literacy Center, call (937) 567-9600 or visit www.brunnerliteracycenter.org
HELPING NOBLE CIRCLE AND HOSPICE OF DAYTON
Members of the Hospice of Dayton staff and the community joined together to create a 90-second video for the Pink Glove Dance competition. Viewers are voting to select a winner, with a top prize of a $25,000 donation going to a designated cancer related charity from Medline.
Hospice of Dayton has designated the Noble Circle Project, a support program for women diagnosed with cancer in the Miami Valley, as their charity of choice.
The video can be viewed at www.pinkglovedance.com/videos/2013-video-contest/hospice-of-dayton/
Viewers can vote one time per day at no cost through Nov. 8. Winners will be announced on Nov. 15.
HELPING OUR COMMUNITY MAKE A DIFFERENCE
Make a Difference publishes wish lists of nonprofit organizations, connecting our readers with those groups that are in need of gently used or new items.
If your organization would like to be featured, please send details to Meredith Moss: MMoss@coxohio.com.
Please include a daytime phone number.