Literacy Council thanks volunteers

Published 12:00 am Sunday, May 2, 2004

Suffolk News-Herald

Volunteers are responsible for the Suffolk Literacy Council’s accomplishments in the Suffolk community, said Councilman Bobby Ralph, guest speaker at Fourth Annual Suffolk Literacy Awards Luncheon on Wednesday.

The organization honored seven dedicated volunteers at the event: Blanche Rountree, Jenny Spring, Jennifer Bunn, Willie Ann Gardner, Baker Parker, Faye Taylor and Bernice Abram. Each received a certificate of appreciation from Gary Williams, program manager and emcee for the event.

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Dr. Emily Richardson, secretary of the Suffolk Literacy Council and an employee of Suffolk Public Schools, received a certificate of appreciation for her service on the board. She is retiring from the school system this year.

Ann March, tutor coordinator, introduced Ralph, who said that the real work of volunteers began in 1987 at Morgan Memorial Library. It was further enhanced through the generosity of Jack Eure in the Eure Executive Building.

Volunteerism has been part of the fabric of America since our earliest days and it has always been one of our greatest strengths and most noble traditions, Ralph said.

The Suffolk Literacy Council has recruited and trained over 300 volunteers and reaches an estimated 200 adult clients and 1,000 children annually.

&uot;The Suffolk Literacy Council was launched on the recognition of a community need that was not being adequately addressed and the belief that by working with others, we could make a difference in people’s

lives in real and tangible ways,&uot; Ralph said. &uot;And so it is that you, the volunteer, represent Suffolk’s greatest natural resource.&uot;

The organization has been housed at Suffolk Christian Church, 216 N. Main St., for the past decade.

Each tutor spends an hour a week at the church helping someone learn to read.

&uot;We are always looking for more volunteers,&uot; said Williams. &uot;As long as there are students, there will always be a need for volunteers,&uot;

For more information on the Suffolk Literacy Council, contact Williams at 539-1524.