Sunday March 11, 2001

3.  Consider helping someone learn to read

To the Editor:
    As President of LVA-Monongalia County, I want to thank The Dominion Post for its fine coverage of our literacy programs through editorial and feature articles. February is Literacy Awareness month and in a flash the month is behind us but the importance of literacy has not faded. The numbers of individuals who have little to no reading skills remain much too great. The high-tech world in which we live and work has little place or patience for those who were left behind educationally.
    Due to illness I retired early from a wonderful career as a physician and surgeon and shortly thereafter began working with Literacy Volunteers of America. I have done a lot of rewarding things in life but few gave me the joy I felt when I read the letter you included in your editorial the first Sunday of February. The writer was my first student and when we began she could not write the alphabet in its entirety. When she looked at me with a sparkle in her eye I had never seen before and said, "Wow, rea ding is fun!" I nearly burst with pride in her accomplishment. Watching her progress over the past four years has shown me that saving lives happens in all sorts of ways. She is now beginning training in a good, well paying job and filled out the require d forms completely by herself.
    I would encourage your readers to stop and think what life would be like without the ability to read. We take road signs for granted. The nonreader is a prisoner and can not venture past the well-known route. We easily read the labels on our medicine. Th e nonreader lives in fear of a mistake. The list goes on and on. Think about it. Then if you like to read and like people, give LVA a call at 296-3400. There is something for everyone.

Ellen Hrabovsky