San Diego Council on Literacy

#LetsReadSD with the San Diego Council on Literacy

Did you know Words Alive is a proud affiliate of the San Diego Council on Literacy (SDCOL)?

For the past 30 years, the SDCOL has worked to bring awareness to the literacy cause in San Diego by uniting the community through advocacy, partnerships, resources, and coordination. As a convener, the SDCOL also brings together 30 affiliate literacy providers from across the county for networking, professional development, and resource sharing.

These opportunities have undoubtedly benefited Words Alive by connecting us with expertise of other passionate providers doing whatever it takes to create a more literate San Diego. And together, we certainly achieve more. Last year, the 30 affiliate partners of the SDCOL delivered no-cost literacy-building services to more than 170,000 children, youth, and adults across San Diego.

One of the central goals of the SDCOL is to instill the importance of literacy in the region. On that front, in 2014 the SDCOL spearheaded a Region that Reads campaign fostering partnerships with the 19 mayors of San Diego County in which each would support the work of the SDCOL. It also encouraged mayors to designate a liaison from each city to ensure greater connectivity and communication between the cities and literacy providers on the ground. Words Alive is proud to have contributed towards this effort as a member of the public policy committee. The SDCOL also shares resources with its affiliate programs, where most recently, the SDCOL contributed to our Read Aloud Program with a donation of new, high-quality children's books that will be distributed through our program-wide giveaway later this month.

Currently, the SDCOL is promoting their #LetsReadSD campaign to empower individuals to share their love of reading on social media. We encourage you to "get caught reading" this month, and learn more about the SDCOL and its affiliate programs to see the amazing work we do together!

Click here for more information about the San Diego Council on Literacy and its affiliated programs, and on the image below for more on the SDCOL's #LetsReadSD campaign.

Preventing the Summer Slide

Words Alive was honored to have been a partner in the Readers in the Heights program this summer alongside Community Housing Works, San Diego Workforce Partnership, San Diego County Office of Education, San Diego Council on Literacy, City Heights Public Library, and United Way San Diego. Readers in the Heights was a pilot program aiming to prevent summer slide by aligning and leveraging existing resources to bring summer learning opportunities to the City Heights Community Development Corporation (CHCDC). This year there were 51 children enrolled in the program and 36 children with perfect attendance. The diverse demographics of the children involved in the program is reflected in the varied language spoken at home. Families reported Somali, Amharic, Spanish, Arabic, Kizigua, or Haitian Creole as their primary language spoken at home. During the program the children had the opportunity to take field trips to the library, be read aloud to, create arts and crafts and make new friends. 

Words Alive modeled our Small Group session during the Readers in the Heights program and providing volunteers to read preassigned books to the children followed by a small group book discussion. During the small group, children are divided into groups of 4 and have the opportunity to look more closely at the book. The Words Alive volunteers ask questions that encourage participation and analytical thought while providing a space for every child to share their opinions about the story. The Readers in the Heights facilitators have noticed and reported the positive impact of the program, “The kids look forward to the reading components as the ‘special part’ of the program”. 

After 4 weeks of hard work and fun the participating families graduated from the program. Graduation day celebrated the families for their dedication and time they have invested in their children’s education. We wanted families to walk away feeling appreciated, empowered, and fulfilled.