Letter from the Executive Director

Dear friends,
Hello and happy 2018! We're excited to share our new mission and vision statements.  As an organization, we've been thinking a lot about what we can do to increase understanding in this complicated world we're living in, and how we can work together as a community to ensure education, equity, and opportunity for all. As a part of this, we spent time last year revisiting our mission (who we are and what we do) and vision (what we hope to achieve). Thank you to the many volunteers, staff, and community members who participated in this process! These new statements will continue to guide our work in adult literacy while building an inclusive and equitable society.

Read on for more Literacy Source news and updates. Thank you for joining us!


Lynn Livesley
Literacy Source Executive Director
New Student Registration in March
Monday, March 12 and Wednesday, March 14, 2018 
Lake City Learning Center - 3200 NE 125th St, Seattle, WA 98125
Time TBD

Our next New Student Registration (NSR) for spring term will take place on March 12th and 14th. The times are TBD, and will be set once we have a better idea of which classes will have spaces. If you or someone you know is interested in attending our classes in spring, please call us at 206-782-2050 and provide us with your information. We will get back to you once we determine what times the NSR will be held.
Student Spotlight

Olga Savranskaya

We're so happy to feature Olga, one of our longtime students, this month. She is currently studying in the ESOL 4-5 daytime class with Kody and Leslie, and tutors with Chris. She started out by taking ESOL 2-3 in our Fremont center in fall of 2015, and has moved up levels as her English has steadily improved.

Olga was born in Ukraine, lived in Russia for about 40 years, and moved to Seattle to be with her daughter, who married an American, in 2015. Olga's eyes light up when she talks about her many hobbies - she loves to grow flowers, vegetables, and fruit in her garden; sew clothing; cook Ukrainian foods; and bake delicious pastries and bread! She would eventually love to find a job in the US, while also trying to balance family commitments in Russia and Seattle. 

We have really enjoyed having Olga at Literacy Source - her commitment to studying and improving her English skills is incredibly impressive. Keep up the great work, Olga!
Staff Changes
This month we're saying goodbye to and welcoming a few employees!

We're sad to say that Tess Griswold, our ABE Instructional Lead, has left Literacy Source to pursue career opportunities that are closer to her family. Tess started at Literacy Source in  March 2016, right in the middle of our move to Lake City, so she started off by showing great flexibility without a real office or classes. Since 2016, she taught and developed curriculum for the ABE 4-5/GED preparation class, supervised the GED lab, developed a distance learning program for GED students, and taught and supervised ABE 3 and ABE math. She eventually also added ESOL 2-3 to her teaching toolkit. She was also part of the Literacy Source IC-T (Inclusion Change Team) working on increasing cultural inclusion at our organization. She has been a great advisor to students and volunteers alike. She's helped many students on their pathways to GED, college, and other goals. We wish her the best of luck in all future endeavors!

Natalia (center) with students at El Centro de la Raza

Natalia Zarazo

Natalia Zarazo has also left Literacy Source. She joined us in the fall of 2015 when she started teaching an English and Computers class for employees at Kaiser Permanente Medical Center in Bellevue (formerly Group Health). While there, she helped environmental service (EVS) workers learn to use email and develop skills to communicate with their supervisors. She also willingly took on an additional class at the Northgate Library before becoming one of our Ready To Work instructors at the Rainier Beach Library for the past year. As part of the instructional team, Natalia worked to build the new class and our partnership with ACRS. She also taught seniors computer skills at El Centro de la Raza.
All of us (and her students) will miss Natalia's dedication and smile, but wish her the best of luck as she tackles a new position with Lake Washington Technical College. 
Thanks Natalia!

Megan Dalton

Megan is our new Ready to Work ESOL instructor at Rainier Beach Library! She's from San Jose, CA and moved to the Pacific Northwest to attend Seattle University. She double majored in Spanish and International Studies at that institution and also had the opportunity to study abroad in Granada, Spain during part of her time in college. While experiencing the ups and downs of learning a second language alone in a new country, Megan realized that she wanted to be a welcoming and helpful presence when she returned to her Seattle home with its many immigrants and English language learners. She dove into a graduate program at the University of Washington and received her Master's in TESOL in 2015. She has been an ESOL instructor at various locations in Seattle, including Casa Latina, North Seattle College, and the University of Washington. She believes that learning a new language not only provides access to a better life, but also deepens our connection to our diverse community.

We would also like to give a shoutout and thank you to Maude Houston and Jay Friedman, who are filling in short term and teaching Literacy Source classes this winter!
Artist Spotlight

Sara Bracken
We're happy to introduce Sara Bracken, who is our featured artist this winter term. Sara is a collage artist living in the Seward Park neighborhood of Seattle. She says:

"Collage is a relatively new medium for me and I love the accessibility, being able to start and finish a piece in one day, hunting for interesting material, and mostly creating compositions that are at once beautiful and surreal. All of my pieces are hand cut and pasted. I enjoy scouring Goodwill for books of all kinds and sizes, sheet music, album covers, etc. and estate sales for vintage catalogues and magazines. I'll pick up anything that inspires me, even if at the time I have no idea how I might use the images. Sometimes I'll work on a series with a solid theme/idea and other times I'll just completely let myself play (often as a break while working on a series). The act of cutting out people and things opens up doors of possibility in my creative mind. Like any artist I have good and bad days, but when I am truly in the flow my work feels like a series of thrilling happy accidents."

All of Sara's collages are for sale and she has generously offered a discount for the Literacy Source community. Come by the center and take a look! To see more of her work, follow her on Instagram @collage_poet.
Volunteer Spotlight

Paula Suarez
We are pleased to feature Paula as our first volunteer spotlight of the year.

Paula has been volunteering at Literacy Source since September 2014, donating 240 hours in our twice weekly Learning Labs, which focus on teaching computer skills along with the basic skills of writing and learning English. Paula started volunteering in our Fremont location and we were delighted that she followed us to our new Lake City center, taking over the lesson planning for the class when a staff member left. Paula's graphic design skills have been a great benefit both in her creative lesson plans and in other projects she has stepped up to do, like rendering a beautiful graphic of our new Lake City location and designing some of the colorful signs around the center!

Read more
Program News
Ready to Work graduation at ACRS last year. Photo courtesy of Alabastro Photography.

Thanks to new funding from the City of Seattle, the Ready to Work program is expanding to West Seattle in 2018! Ready to Work (RTW) is a comprehensive program providing opportunities for people with very limited English (ESOL levels 1-3) to work towards economic self-sufficiency. English language learning is supplemented with job placement services and ongoing skills training opportunities appropriate for the student's English proficiency level. With funding from Seattle's Office of Immigrant and Refugee Affairs, Literacy Source has partnered with Asian Counseling and Referral Service (ACRS) since 2015 to offer two RTW classes in SE Seattle. In 2017, thanks to support from the City of Seattle, we were able to add a third class and offer an RTW class at our Learning Center in Lake City. Starting this spring we'll be partnering with Neighborhood House to offer a RTW class at the High Point Center in West Seattle. RTW Classes are held four days per week, featuring a workforce-readiness curriculum that includes career exploration, job-hunting skills, work-based communication, and planning for next steps in employment or education.  

Check out this CityStream video from the City of Seattle about the Ready to Work South program! Thanks to all our partners who make this community based program work! 
Volunteer Needs

One-on-One Tutors
Daytime tutors needed for ESOL, reading, writing, math, GED prep, and citizenship 
2 x 1.5 hrs per week (ongoing, flexible times)

Student Assessment Proctors  
2-5 hr shifts every 7-10 weeks, daytime and evenings

Sight Words and Phonics Testers
Evenings, 1-3 hours, 2x/term

Computer Skills Tutors - one time tutoring opportunity
Thanks to a generous donation from the City of Seattle, some of our students are receiving refurbished laptops. We need volunteers to help students get familiar with their new devices.  Basic computer skills and Windows experience required. Please let us know if you can help on either of these dates:
Wed, Mar 7, 2-3:30 pm
Thu, Mar 8, 2-3:30 pm and 7-8:30 pm
Training and ongoing support provided for all positions. For more information please visit our website or contact  Caroline.
Upcoming Events

Literacy Source Annual Breakfast
Tuesday, May 1st 
7:30-9 am @ Seattle Pacific University

The 16th annual Literacy Source Breakfast will be held on Tuesday, May 1st  at Seattle Pacific University. Join us at 7:30-9 am for student stories and the yearly top 10 booklist with popular author and librarian Nancy Pearl . If you're interested in sponsoring the breakfast, serving as a table captain, or attending, please contact  Lynn . Mark your calendars!
Check out more events (orientations and trainings) on our  website.
Center Hours and Closures
Literacy Source is open:

Mon and Wed, 8:30 am-8:30 pm
Tue and Thu, 8:30 am-7:30 pm
Fridays, appointment only

Upcoming important dates and office closures
January 15: Center closed for Martin Luther King Jr. Day
February 19: Center closed for Presidents' Day

Literacy Source recognizes the inherent dignity, equality, and value of every person and strives to create and maintain a learning community that is respectful and welcoming. To foster and maintain a safe and inclusive community of respect, openness, understanding, and civility, it is crucial that students, volunteers, and staff are aware of their rights and options when confronting a discriminatory or bias-related incident. To read more, click here