This weekend I am attending a two-day course in Bunbury to become a tutor in the Read, Write Now program in my community. I am really looking forward to it. It is four days training in total, presented over two weekends. I have been a literacy tutor in the past and enjoyed the experience greatly.
People who cannot read or write (in their first or second language) are at a real disadvantage. I became aware of this in the 1980’s when I was living in Fitzroy Crossing in the Kimberley region of Western Australia. It was election time and information was only available in a written format in English. Many of the adult Indigenous people had limited English language skills and tended to make their decisions based on the friendliness and rapport of whatever politician was visiting at the time. It struck me as being very unfair.
This experience prompted me to work with the local people to help improve their reading and writing. It was the first time I became aware of how much I enjoy reading and writing and determined to use these skills in my life and in my career. That insight has impacted on many decisions over the years and I am excited to be going back to where I started with the Adult Literacy program.