VITAL - Volunteers in Tutoring Adult Learners

Think Library: VITAL

April 17–23 is Volunteer Week

National Volunteer Week with photos of two volunteers.

This week, we’re celebrating the volunteers that support the Library’s mission, lending their time and talent to make a difference in our community! Dedicated and knowledgeable volunteers are essential to the success of the Library!

 

Volunteers in Tutoring Adult Learners (VITAL): Mary DePew, Volunteer

According to a recent survey of adult skills, 1 in 6 Americans struggles with basic literacy skills. Locally, 1 in 10 Monroe County residents speaks a language other than English at home. VITAL provides a safe and respectful learning environment for adults who want to improve their reading, writing, math, or English-language skills. VITAL’s volunteer tutors help adults in our community attain greater life success through literacy!

   

Indiana’s High School Equivalency Testing Changes

Preparing for the High School Equivalency Test

What is a High School Equivalency Credential?

In the United States, adults who leave high school before graduation have another way to secure a high school equivalency credential. Through testing, you can demonstrate you have the same skills and knowledge as a high school graduate.

The High School Equivalency (HSE) is a high school diploma alternative aligning to current Indiana high school academics, preparing you for continuing education or employment. The assessment is based on five subject areas: math, reading, writing, science, and social studies. Workers with this credential earn an average of $10,000 per year more than those without, helping them create a whole new future.  

 

   
Learn    Lifelong Learning    Literacy    VITAL   

Barb Fisher, VITAL Volunteer

Barb Fisher

Barbara “Barb” Fisher, a dear friend of the VITAL program, passed away on April 1, 2021. Barb’s love of reading led her to VITAL in 2008, when she participated in training to teach English as a New Language to Bloomington newcomers. Over the next 12 years, Barb was a regular fixture at VITAL. As a one-on-one tutor, she volunteered with nine different English language learners, helping them improve their language skills and confidence while adjusting to life in the US. As an office volunteer, she welcomed new faces at the VITAL front desk and assisted with clerical work. As a Quiz Bowl player, she matched wits with Bloomington’s finest trivia brains, competing under the titles “Infosyndics” and “VITAL Statistics” among other creative monikers. Finally, as a generous donor and supporter, she anonymously sponsored teams and encouraged many to take part in the annual fundraising and advocacy event. Barb was one of a kind, and she was certainly "vital" to us.

   
Connect    VITAL    Volunteering   

April 18–24 is National Volunteer Week

National Volunteer Week

National Volunteer Week is an opportunity to recognize and thank the volunteers who lend their time, talent, and voices to make a difference in our community! We are fortunate to have so many volunteers who are passionate about the Library’s mission and generously share their skills in a variety of long-term and short-term commitments.

   

Learn Basic Computer Skills with Northstar Learning

The internet is everywhere, allowing you to work, play, and complete daily life tasks wherever there is WiFi. This is especially helpful in the age of physical distancing and mask-wearing.

For those with WiFi access, barriers may still exist. Some community members experience frustration with email and online forms, and concerns about internet safety, leaving them feeling increasingly isolated from social connections and workforce opportunities.

Do you have a friend or family member that could use a little help? VITAL's Northstar Online Learning teaches the basic computer skills needed to communicate using computers. Its free, self-paced courses offer step-by-step instruction, practice, and review for:

   

VITAL Receives $25,000 Donation from the Estate of Robert Klausmeier

Robert Klausmeier photo

Last fall, Volunteer in Tutoring Adult Learners (VITAL) said goodbye to Robert (Bob) Edward Klausmeier, a long-time VITAL tutor and advocate, who passed away at the age of 93. Over the course of 23 years, Bob worked with at least 30 learners, providing one-on-one tutoring to help adults achieve their personal literacy goals. This fall a $25,000 donation from the estate of Bob Klausmeier was gifted to VITAL, ensuring that generations of future learners will benefit from his generosity.

   

VITAL Services Online

VITAL Services Online

The global pandemic has closed classroom doors around the world, but adult literacy and language services remain essential during this time of health crisis and uncertainty. According to Proliteracy, over 36 million adults in the United States cannot read, write, or do basic math above a third grade level. Adults lacking these essential skills have increased vulnerability to COVID-19, and are at greater risk for financial instability and other social issues.

Volunteers in Tutoring Adult Learners (VITAL) provides learning opportunities for adults who want to improve their reading, writing, math, or English-language skills. In order to safely continue services, VITAL services online provides distance learning opportunities that are flexible and can adapt to changing circumstances.

   
Connect    Learn    Read    VITAL   

National Volunteer Week: Remote Learning

Patsy working with learner Jianhong

During National Volunteer Week, the Library celebrates its VITAL volunteers for their incredible efforts in support of adult literacy!

Volunteers in Tutoring Adult Learners (VITAL) provides learning opportunities for adults who want to improve their reading, writing, and English language skills. These learning relationships thrive on connectivity––whether in the Library, a coffee shop, or an adult education classroom, tutors and learners rely on weekly meetings to learn and practice new skills. When the COVID-19 pandemic changed traditional options, VITAL volunteer tutors kicked their creative teaching skills into high gear. Here's what they've been doing with their learners.

   
Connect    Learn    Read   

2019 Be More Award Recipients are VITAL

Be More Awards 2019

The ​​City of Bloomington Volunteer Network Be More Awards is the local community's way of honoring and applauding the outstanding, but often unrecognized efforts of its volunteers. Ten awards are presented annually during a celebration honoring nominees in which a $500 check is presented to each of the recipient's volunteer organizations in honor of their outstanding service.

Congratulations to Volunteers in Tutoring Adult Learners (VITAL) tutor Molly Gleeson for winning the 2019 Be More Knowledgeable (Education/Literacy) award, and to VITAL tutor David White for winning the 2019 Be More Dedicated (Lifetime of Service) award.

   
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