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July 2, 2003

Government of Canada funds two literacy projects in St. John's

From: Canada NewsWire (press release), Canada - Jul 2, 2003

ST. JOHN'S, NL, July 2 /CNW/ - The Honourable Gerry Byrne, Minister of
State for the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency, on behalf of the
Honourable Jane Stewart, Minister of Human Resources Development, today
announced funding of $177,000, through the National Literacy Secretariat, for
two new literacy initiatives in St. John's. The projects are being undertaken
by the Workplace Literacy Institute Planning Committee and the Newfoundland
and Labrador Association of the Deaf.
"The Government of Canada is committed to helping all Canadians acquire
literacy skills that will help them reach their full potential in the
workplace and in the community," said Minister Byrne. "The research generated
from these projects will support the province in undertaking new literacy
programming initiatives."
Through the first project, the Workplace Literacy Institute Planning
Committee will receive $125,000 in funding to organize and implement the
Atlantic Region Workplace Literacy Institute. The Institute will provide an
opportunity for the work force to meet, share information, and explore the
links between workplace literacy and community development. Literacy workshops
will be held to help determine ways in which workplace literacy programs can
improve literacy levels, to explore the role of Prior Learning Assessment and
Recognition in workplace literacy programs, and to explore workplace literacy
initiatives that Atlantic Canadians can adopt to become better prepared for
labour market participation. Workshops will also be held to encourage
collaboration among stakeholders and demonstrate how participation can be
increased in workplace literacy programs.
Under the second project, the Newfoundland and Labrador Association of
the Deaf will receive funding of $52,000 to conduct a comprehensive literacy
needs assessment of the deaf population in the province. The data will be
collected through interviews, regional town hall meetings and meetings with a
regional planner. Once collected, the data will be analyzed and a profile will
be developed for the six Strategic Social Plan Regions (Northeast Avalon,
Avalon, Eastern, Central, Cormack-Grenfell and Labrador). The results of the
needs assessment will help the Association place itself in a position to
undertake further work related to developing and implementing an appropriate
literacy program for deaf adults in the province.
Literacy skills are linked to work skills, health and self-esteem. Higher
literacy skills among Canadians enable them to participate more fully in our
economy and our society. For instance, literacy skills help determine the
kinds of jobs we find, enable parents to read to their children, and help us
understand technical jargon, allowing us to use tools and equipment safely.
The National Literacy Secretariat works in partnership with provincial
and territorial governments, business, labour and the volunteer community. The
goal of these partnerships is to increase public awareness of literacy, help
people share information, improve access to literacy programs, develop
learning materials and advance research on literacy.

These projects support the Government of Canada's Innovation Strategy and
more specifically Knowledge Matters, a policy paper that addresses the
national challenge of ensuring that Canadians possess the skills and knowledge
required to fully participate in the knowledge-based economy.

Funding for these projects was provided for in the February 2003 federal

These projects have been reviewed to ensure compliance with the
Department's administration of its grant and contribution programs.


- Government of Canada funding: $177,000 for
two projects through the National Literacy
- Objective: undertake literacy workshops and
assessment to develop improved literacy
programming in Newfoundland and Labrador

For further information: Media Relations Office, Human Resources
Development Canada, (819) 994-5559

© 2002 Canada NewsWire Ltd. All rights reserved.