(Columbia, SC) – Turning Pages SC, a literacy council serving adults in Richland and Lexington Counties, has won a $4,500 unrestricted grant from a New York based foundation.
This past fall, under new leadership, the council’s Board of Directors made a new strategic plan aimed at building high impact adult reading programs with structured curriculum and routine tutor workshops. Their vision caught the eye, and heart, of David Connerty-Marin, the Vice President of Education at the Morris J. & Betty Kaplun Foundation. “We received over 150 grant proposals,” said Connerty-Marin. “We narrowed those down, then conducted four site visits. Turning Pages SC stood out for the unique nature of their work, the impact our grant will have, and their deliberate and measured planning for both recovery from the pandemic and future expansion.”
Interim Executive Director Lisa Cole and the council’s CFO Chris Keefer participated in the 2-month long application process. They were both humbled to learn of the unexpected win just as the new year opened. “This generous grant boosts our ability to give our learners the materials and tutors they need,” said Keefer. “We work hard to lift up our learners and help them develop literacy skills to navigate the complexities of everyday life. The Kaplun Foundation leaders have affirmed our vision of a world where anyone can move up and ahead through the power of reading.”
Founded in 1968 as the Greater Columbia Literacy Council, Turning Pages SC teaches adults to read through personalized one-on-one tutoring that is free of cost. Volunteer tutors receive training and are then matched with adult learners and no-cost portable curriculum kits. Tutoring takes place during one hour weekly sessions for at times convenient to both the tutor and the learner. Sessions are held at public partner locations such as at the Richland library.