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Romance Writers of America Supports Literacy through Annual Conference

Romance Writers of America held their annual RWA Conference July 23-26 in San Antonio, Texas. This 10,200-member nonprofit trade association seeks to assist the professional advancement of romance writers through networking and advocacy, in addition to supporting worldwide literacy.

At each annual conference, hundreds of romance authors meet with and sign books for fans as part of the “Readers for Life” Literacy Autographing. All the proceeds from this autographing event go to literacy organizations. This year, with the help of more than 500 authors, RWA was able to raise more than $53,000. ProLiteracy is proud to be a recipient of a portion of these proceeds, along with Literacy Texas, Restore Education, and Each One Teach One San Antonio.

“RWA has been a remarkable supporter of ProLiteracy for the past two decades,” says Kevin Morgan, president and CEO of ProLiteracy. Since 1990, RWA has donated more than $716,000 to literacy. 




ProLiteracy Statement on the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act

In July, the United States Congress has passed theWorkforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA), bipartisan, bicameral legislation reauthorizing the Workforce Investment Act (WIA) of 1998. The U.S. House of Representatives passed the bill by a nearly unanimous vote of 415-6, and the U.S. Senate passed it by 95-3. It now moves to President Obama for his signature.

ProLiteracy supports WIOA as a crucial step toward getting Americans back to work by reinvesting in the adult literacy and basic education field.

ProLiteracy's Executive Vice President Peter Waite was in attendance in the U.S. House of Representatives during the introduction of this important bill.

"ProLiteracy applauds Congress for reauthorizing this crucial legislation which will help the U.S. workforce obtain the education and skills necessary to succeed in today's economy," says Waite.

ProLiteracy will continue to press for additional funding for the adult literacy and basic education field and to ensure that the unique needs of the lowest level learners and the programs that serve them are recognized.




ProLiteracy Receives Literacy Grant from Dollar General Foundation

In May, ProLiteracy received a $265,000 grant from the Dollar General Literacy Foundation to continue to build a replicable and scalable model of creating adult literacy programming within non-literacy service networks such as in agencies that serve migrants, the homeless, or victims of abuse.

In the pilot year of the Expanding Access program (EAP), ProLiteracy worked with agencies in El Paso, Texas, San Antonio, Texas, and Little Rock, Arkansas. EAP expanded to Ardmore, Oklahoma, in its second year. In all four communities, ProLiteracy is working with local organizations to expand access to literacy and English language services for children and adults, and to build prosperity for the entire community through literacy and education.

The program in Ardmore includes other national partners that have come together to produce change focused on one rural community. Together, the partners offer services, resources, and programming in citizenship preparation; family literacy; GED/HSE preparation; learning English as another language; basic reading and writing; and technology. Ardmore, located in south central Oklahoma, 90 miles from both Oklahoma City and Dallas-Ft. Worth, has a population of 35,000, 93 percent of which are over the age of 18. Dollar General is a major employer in Ardmore.

Ardmore Literacy is a collaboration of The American Library Association; The Barbara Bush Foundation for Family Literacy; The Chamber of Commerce’s Institute for a Competitive Workforce; Jobs for the Future; The National Center for Families Learning; and ProLiteracy, and local partners Ardmore Barbara Bush Literacy Corps; Ardmore Chamber of Commerce; Ardmore Public Library; The Grace Center of Southern Oklahoma; New Dimension Literacy Council; St. Mary Catholic Church; and Ardmore City Schools.

The Expanding Access project continues through 2015 with the completion of a national awareness raising initiative and the dissemination of a model blueprint that other communities can adapt to implement the same type of services.

For more information about ProLiteracy’s Expanding Access, contact Jane Hugo, senior project coordinator, at



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