I was driving to work a couple of weeks ago when I heard an episode of the StoryCorps series on NPR. If you’ve ever heard a StoryCorps interview before, then you understand why I reach for the tissues as soon as they say it’s coming up. This particular interview was no different, and the fact that it related to reading made it especially moving to me.
This was the story of Joe Buford of Nashville, age 63, who is learning to read after decades of hiding the fact from family and coworkers. He worried that he had passed “what was wrong” with him on to his children, and avoided promotions at work. For the last year or so he has been working with literacy tutor Michelle Miller, and when he finally realized that he was beginning to be able to read, he “jumped up and ran through the house. It made me cry and I’m thinking, ‘Wow, it really is sinking in.'” Listen to Joe’s story in his own words here.
DeKalb County Public Library offers many literacy materials to assist those looking to improve their reading skills, as well as materials for tutors helping others. Visit any branch for more information, or check out our services on our website.
To find a literacy tutor or if you are interested in volunteering as a tutor, contact Literacy Volunteers of Atlanta, located conveniently across the street from the downtown Decatur Library. They offer one-on-one volunteer tutoring as well as training for tutors. LVA seeks to promote lifelong learning, and provides tutors for both adult literacy as well as ESL (English as second language).