Rhonda Palmer is part of the literacy team ready to help people in the area get knowledgeable about reading

CBAL helps you get literate about literacy

Are you computer literate? How’s your medical literacy? Numeracy? What about your literacy literacy?

Are you computer literate? How’s your medical literacy? Numeracy? What about your literacy literacy?

Literacy is often thought of the ability to read or write, as in its common dictionary definition, but there is another way to read literacy as competency or knowledge in a specific area. That encompasses reading and writing nicely as well.

In our specific area, namely Nakusp and outlying region, literacy is supported by a number of programs, many of which are run through CBAL, the Columbia Basin Alliance for Literacy. From Strong Start to computer skills for seniors, CBAL is taking on increasing the competency and knowledge of all learners.

Kids preparing to go to school can start learning the basics about math, science, art and reading as well as socializing with Strong Start, a loosely structured drop-in learning centre that kids and their caretakers can visit.

“It’s learning through play,” said Community Literacy Coordinator Rhonda Palmer, who has seen six new families visit the centre in the last few weeks, which she finds exciting.

For reading and book-type literacy, CBAL has several programs open to people in the area. The Early Literacy Program in New Denver helps instil the love of stories and reading with young kids, while Reading to Seniors is a program (looking for volunteers if you like reading and are looking for an audience) about to expand to Minto House here in Nakusp. Then there’s One-to-One Reading taking place in elementary schools from Edgewood to New Denver. English as a second language, and adult literacy are both supported by the organization, too.

But CBAL’s idea of literacy is broad, and the organization brings the wide world of the world wide web to folks who may not know how to use a computer to stay in touch with family and friends but would like to.

“There are a lot of seniors and adults who want to communicate with grandkids but don’t know how,” commented Palmer, who sees increasing computer literacy as also increasing intergenerational communication.

There has been much made of increasing computational literacy, not just computer literacy with kids, so that they are not only able to use computers but also to understand what makes them work. Although the Nakusp literacy group hasn’t planned anything yet, it doesn’t mean they wouldn’t look into it, said Palmer.

“The CAP – Community Access Program – site has been a real hub for literacy,” Palmer said. Here in Nakusp, she said it has been like a CBAL storefront, running ESL programs, senior and adult computer literacy classes, and Books Everywhere (free books and magazines for kids and adults).

CAP funding was cut by the federal government suddenly in March of last year, but Palmer said she and Adult Literacy co-ordinator Liz Gillis are trying hard to find a way to keep the mostly volunteer-run centre going because it is home to community literacy in Nakusp.

Literacy can extend to finding some help filling out byzantine government forms, or finding out how to read a prescription or learn how to socialize. Even emotional literacy is tackled. The Roots of Empathy program brings kindergarten and grade seven kids in contact with babies and teaches them about growing up while exploring their feelings.

As any newcomer to the area knows, a crash course in historical literacy would be fantastic, outlining the waves of migration to the region and times of boom and bust.

CBAL also partners with various community groups to put on events. CAPC and CBAL will be offering Family Night Out which offers dinner, play and story time – a chance to get socially literate – beginning October 30.


Just Posted

Judgment reserved in Nakusp school sex trial

Trial concluded today with lawyer’s summations

Former teacher acquitted on two of four sex charges

Judge found no evidence to support sexual assault charges against Shanny McIvor

New Denver emergency ward to remain 24/7

Interior Health says it’s postponing changes to operating hours.

New Glade ferry enters testing phase

The Glade II will be able to carry heavier loads and will emit less greenhouse gases.

Smiles all around as province announces emergency ward funding

$2.1 million to go to much-needed upgrades

B.C. cougar kitten rescued after mother struck by vehicle

Conservation Officers find home for young kitten found dehydrated and frostbitten near Williams Lake

VIDEO: Thousands join women’s march events across B.C.

Today marks one year since the first Women’s March on Washington

Two Canadians, two Americans abducted in Nigeria are freed

Kidnapping for ransom is common in Nigeria, especially on the Kaduna to Abuja highway

Are you ready for some wrestling? WWE’s ‘Raw’ marks 25 years

WWE flagship show is set to mark its 25th anniversary on Monday

B.C. woman who forged husband’s will gets house arrest

Princeton Judge says Odelle Simmons did not benefit from her crime

Women’s movement has come a long way since march on Washington: Activists

Vancouver one of several cities hosting event on anniversary of historic Women’s March on Washington

Liberals’ 2-year infrastructure plan set to take 5: documents

Government says 793 projects totalling $1.8 billion in federal funds have been granted extensions

Workers shouldn’t be used as ‘pawns’ in minimum wage fight: Wynne

Comments from Kathleen Wynne after demonstrators rallied outside Tim Hortons locations across Canada

John ‘Chick’ Webster, believed to be oldest living former NHL player, dies

Webster died Thursday at his home in Mattawa, Ont., where he had resided since 1969

Most Read