For most of us, reading and writing are as natural as breathing. But imagine if you didn’t have the functional literacy skills needed to complete a job application, sign a check, understand a child’s report card, or read a prescription. While the overall number of illiterate persons has fallen since 2000, 781 million adults — 15 percent of the world’s adult population — still lack basic reading and writing skills. Women account for nearly two-thirds of illiterate adults.
We take action to empower educators to inspire learning at all ages:
- TEACHER TRAINING
- We share our knowledge and experience with educators and other professionals who work with vulnerable populations.
- ADULT LITERACY
- Rotary members fight adult illiteracy by working with local advocates to offer community literacy programs.
- ROTARY SCHOLARSHIPS
- Rotary members invest in the future by giving scholarships to students who have the potential to change our communities.
- EDUCATING REFUGEES
- A university president and Rotary club fight Boko Haram to bring education and food to refugees in Nigeria.
- COACHING TEACHERS
- Realizing that getting children into school isn’t enough, Rotary shifts to mentoring and coaching teachers.
- The Rotarian Action Group Against Slavery has a strategy for fighting modern slavery that’s working at the local level.
- MENTORING STUDENTS
- Rotary club pairs students with celebrity and CEO mentors for success.
- Opening schools: In Afghanistan, Rotary members opened a girls’ school to break the cycle of poverty and social imbalance.
- Teaching adults to read: Rotary members in the United States partnered with ProLiteracy Detroit to recruit and train tutors after a study showed that more than half of the local adult population was functionally illiterate.
- New teaching methods: The SOUNS program in South Africa, Puerto Rico and the United States teaches educators how to improve literacy by teaching children to recognize letters by sounds instead of names.
- Making schools healthy: Rotarians are providing clean, fresh water to every public school in Lebanon so students can be healthier and get a better education.