National Adult Literacy Awareness Week 2012

September 21, 2013

National Adult Literacy Awareness Week will be celebrated nationwide between the 24 and 28 of September.

The aim of the week is to raise awareness of the literacy issue in Ireland and inform people about all the free courses to improve their reading, writing and maths skills that are available nationwide. Throughout the week members of the general public can drop into their local VEC Adult Literacy Centre to find out more about the learning services that are available to them.

“Sometimes people are very worried about returning to education and hide their difficulties with reading and writing from their friends and family. However, this does not have to be the case and we would encourage anyone to pick up the phone or drop into their local VEC Adult Literacy Centre.  Adult education is a very different experience to school and it can open many doors for people once they get started. There’s no need to be worried about attending a course. You can work at your own pace either on a one to one basis with a tutor, or if you feel like it you can join a group. The great thing is that you are not alone – there are thousands of adults attending courses around the country. Although it requires some work, it’s a great experience that opens up a whole new world of opportunities in a friendly and relaxed environment. Not only do people improve their old skills but they also gain the confidence to go on to learn new ones,” said Inez Bailey, Director, National Adult Literacy Agency.

While there are currently 45,000 people taking part in adult literacy courses around the country, there are still many people who are living with a literacy difficulty. In the last OECD survey it was estimated that one in four Irish adults have problems with even the simplest literacy task such as reading instructions on a bottle of aspirin. However most adults with low literacy skills can read something but find it hard to understand official forms and instructions. Some will have left school confident about their numeracy and reading skills but find that changes in their workplace and everyday life make their skills inadequate. The literacy skills demanded by society are changing all the time.

With this in mind National Adult Literacy Awareness Week is held every year in September to raise awareness of tuition options nationally and highlight the benefits of improving reading, writing and maths skills.Members of the public should feel free to drop into their local VEC Adult Literacy Centre to find out more about the learning options that are available to them. They can also freephone the National Adult Literacy Agency (NALA) on 1800 20 20 65 or freetext 50050 if they want help finding the literacy service closest to them. The phone line is operated by experienced staff who can identify learner’s needs and advise them on literacy services available to them. Alternatively, if a person would like to learn in the comfort and privacy of their own home, the National Adult Literacy Agency also offer flexible home learning and teach yourself courses, which they can work at theirr own pace online or on the phone, with tutors available to assist at any time.


Tallaght takes centre stage during National Adult Literacy Awareness Week 2012

Tallaght was chosen by the National Adult Literacy Agency (NALA) to highlight how integrating literacy-friendly policies can positively affect local communities by showcasing all the great work being done in the area. During the week five events will be held in Tallaght between the 24 and 28 of September to celebrate Literacy Awareness Week.

On Monday 24 September, the Minister of State for Training and Skills, Ciarán Cannon, T.D. will launch a new ESRINALA research report on the impact of literacy difficulties in the Irish workplace and hear about best practice from the Skills for Work initiative in Tallaght. The event will be hosted by County Dublin VEC and will focus on the training needs of people in employment who have literacy and numeracy difficulties and what is needed to support their progression.

Venue: County  Dublin VEC Head Office, Tallaght. Time: 12 noon to 1pm


On Tuesday 25 September – Tallaght County Library Event has been canceled.


On Wednesday 26 September, Pat Rabbitte, T.D. Minister for Communications, Energy & Natural Resources will speak on the importance of literacy and communications at an event hosted by An Cosán. This event will focus on the importance of working on adult literacy in a community education setting. An Cosán will showcase work on engaging with and empowering adult learners . NALA will present findings on literacy levels amongst different groups of adult learners.

Venue:An Cosán in Jobstown, Tallaght. Time: 11.00 am to 1.00 pm


On Thursday 27 September, the new Mayor for South Dublin, Cathál King will launch a short report outlining the approach and lessons from South Dublin County Council’s (SDCC) Literacy Audit. SDCC are the first Irish local authority to set out to become ‘literacy friendly’ using NALA’s Right from the Start approach.

Venue: South Dublin County Council Chamber. Time:12.00 noon  to 1pm.


On Friday 28 SeptemberNALA, the Institute of Technology Tallaght and South Dublin County Council will run a ‘Maths Eyes’ trail for parents and children. The trail will involve taking parents and children through the park, where participants will try to develop their ‘Maths eyes’ by seeing shapes, patterns, numbers and angles that they come across. A Maths trail is a bit like a treasure hunt, but all the questions are connected to patterns, shapes, numbers, counting, measurements and drawing.  This trail will be available at different levels to ensure everyone has activities to do or problems to solve to match their knowledge and skills.

Venue: Seán Walsh Park, Tallaght. Time: 10.30 am to 12.00 noon (entrance to the sensory garden in the Seán Walsh Park).


For more information contact media@nala.ieor 01 4127909.

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