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Reading Connections NEWSFLASH

Happy spring! Every month we look forward to sharing Reading Connections news and community happenings to keep you in the loop and well connected!
Coming Home: Let's Talk About Reentry

Coming home. This is what will happen with the majority of persons incarcerated. They will reenter back into society, back into our communities and our families. The U.S. Department of Justice has designated April 24-30 as National Reentry Week, and Reading Connections is taking this opportunity to promote awareness and resources for successful reentry.

The road following imprisonment is not an easy one. Reading Connections provides literacy services to the detention center and we have seen the challenges our students face when they are released. Returning to the real world can be both frightening and unbelievably difficult. A main concern is one that every prisoner facing release thinks about: "Will I be able to survive life on the outside?" 

So what can we do to help support loved ones coming home? Specifically, what is the most important thing families can do to ease this transition? 

Plan, prepare and do research! Families can help the loved one make plans and goals and then research opportunities in the area they are returning to, including housing, employment, education and support services. Also, families can help their loved one in reentry by helping them do research on the law, including how to help their loved one understand whether they are actually banned from public housing or public benefits and what kinds of jobs they can get. Family can be most helpful by educating themselves, getting a ton of resources and then empowering their loved one with that information.  

It is critical for family members is to take care of themselves. If you find your loved one a support group, find one for yourself too. Families are often the support structure for a person in reentry, but of course they do not have the education of a case manager, therapist or social worker, yet they are playing that role.

Please contact Tiffany Kallam, Reading Connections Detention Center Program Coordinator, at or 336-230-2223 to obtain a comprehensive Reentry Manual for Guilford County.
Student Earns US Citizenship

We would like to congratulate Reading Connections student Azucena on earning her US citizenship. She passed her exam a few weeks ago and we are so proud!

Azucena has attended Sabrina's evening ESOL class in High Point since September last year. When asked what was next for Azucena, she replied that she can't wait to get her American passport. 
Photos Needed for Our Student and Tutor Celebration
Please plan to join us for our totally redesigned Student and Tutor Celebration. This year's event is scheduled for Tuesday, August 16 from 6-8pm. Our theme will be "A Night of Stars" as we celebrate the stars of Reading Connections--our students and tutors.

We are asking tutors to please submit any pictures you may have of your student or class to so they can be included in the slideshow. Please ask for your students' consent before submitting any photos.
May Tutor Training in Greensboro

Reading Connections is looking for dedicated volunteer tutors who are willing to work with adult students two to four hours a week for at least a year. We are in need of tutors in both Greensboro and High Point. If you are interested or know someone else who is, please consider attending our May tutor training.

The free, three-part training will include an introduction to the agency, requirements for becoming a tutor or instructor, the four components of reading, working with different learning styles, lesson planning, and much more! 

Location: 8th Floor Conference Room of the Self Help Building located at 122 N. Elm Street

Orientation Monday, May 16
Session I Wednesday, May 18
Session II Thursday, May 19

For more information or to register, please call (336) 230-2223 or email us at
Learning Opportunity for Seniors

The Shepherd's Center of Greensboro, a senior enrichment organization, will be hosting their spring session of Adventures in Learning every Thursday April 21st through May 26th from 9:30-2:30 p.m. Adventures in Learning is a program designed to enrich the lives and learning of older adults and caters to seniors seeking new ideas, perspectives, subjects and skills. Each session has three class periods from which participants select between 15-20 classes based on their interests. Classes are taught by retired professors, community professionals or experienced craftsmen. To participate there is a one-time registration fee of $40. For more information or to register please contact the Shepherd Center of Greensboro at (336) 378-0766 or visit their website.

2016 Human Race Recap
Thank you to everyone who made our first Human Race in several years a success! Our program Manager, Roberta Hawthorne, and High Point Coordinator, Anna Ridener represented Reading Connections on Saturday at the Greensboro Coliseum. Thanks to Volunteers Margie Villani and her husband who raced and Greensboro ESOL Student Julissa who made it a family affair and brought her husband and three children.

The Human Race is a 5k walk/run that allows participants to raise money for their favorite nonprofit. There are so many great organizations in the Triad and it was inspiring to see so many people gathered to support the great work we're doing in the community. If you missed it this year, don't worry---we are sure to race again next year.

Conversation Class in High Point

Even when students get practice speaking in class, they often times are still too shy or don't have the confidence to talk in groups with new friends or in the community. We've invited veteran ESOL tutor Tilia Vazquez to host a Friday morning ESOL conversation class. In this class, students will get an opportunity to talk current events, pop culture, and practice expressing themselves verbally.

If you know a student who is interested in dropping in, contact the High Point Office at 336-884-7323 or email Anna Ridener at
High Point Spring Literacy Fair
On Tuesday, April 12th, Reading Connections in High Point had their first Spring Literacy Fair. Around 30 people joined in on an afternoon of snacks, prizes, arts and crafts, and to learn more about Reading Connections and the services that we offer.

During this event we had two students, Josephine and Luz, and two tutors, Sabrina Bellows and Kimberly Thompson, speak about their experiences. We were able to recruit new students and tutors, and share the good work that Reading Connections is doing. A big thank you to everyone that helped make the event a success, and we'll look forward to seeing you at the next one.

Our mission is to provide and advocate for free, individualized adult literacy services to promote life changes for Guilford County residents and surrounding communities.  We always welcome your questions and feedback. Please don't hesitate to contact us to hear more about how our programs are making a difference in our community.

Jennifer Gore, Executive Director
Reading Connections, Inc.
For more information visit
or contact us at one of our offices:

In Greensboro
122 N. Elm Street, Suite 920
Greensboro, NC 27401
FAX 336-230-2203

In High Point
901 N. Main Street
High Point, NC 27262
FAX 336-883-3636