Literacy Council Established In Starke County

Sheila Urwiler

There is now a Literacy Council in Starke County. Through the efforts of Sheila Urwiler, director of the Starke County Library System and Jerry Gurrado of the SCILL Center, a council has been established and volunteers trained.

“We’ve had five people go through the training and are now certified. We’re looking for more volunteers because the more people we have do this, the better. Training only takes about one to two hours. It’s not hard to do. You don’t have to be a teacher; you can just be a person who has a few hours of time a week who would like to help out,” Urwiler said.

Tutoring has already started for students in the program.

“We’ve already had two people start. They’ve been matched up with tutors and they’ve gotten started. The great thing is we’re here to help people with what they want, and where they want to go,” Urwiler said.

The program is free, and completing the program can help you in your employment.

“I was told that there’s a company here in the area that’s hiring, and all they need is people who can do basic simple math, and they can’t find people who can do that,” Urwiler continued, saying statistics reveal that 11% of adults in Starke County are functional illiterates who cannot read a book or newspaper or do even the simplest of arithmetic.

“Many people have come in looking for books to help them do simple math and they’re embarrassed because they think they’re going to have to go to the children’s section. That’s not true! Anymore we have a good collection of books to help adults read, and help adults so they don’t have to use the children’s books,” Urwiler explained.

For more information on how you can get started learning, call the Henry F. Schricker Public Library and talk to Sheila Urwiler at (574) 772-7323.