Literacy Volunteers of Illinois


Supporting Volunteer Literacy In Illinois Since 1979


Steps to Volunteering


Volunteer Tutoring Opportunities


Community-based literacy programs throughout Illinois depend on volunteers to provide free one-to-one tutoring to low literate adults and those who want to learn English. Low literacy adults are a diverse group of people; a variety of reasons account for their low literacy skills. Adults wishing to learn English are usually immigrants who are planning to stay in the United States on a long-term basis.

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Volunteer Tutor Training 


To become an adult literacy tutor, most programs request that potential volunteers attend 12 hours of tutor training, generally offered in the evenings, on Saturdays, or virtually. Some literacy programs charge a small fee for the training to cover the cost of materials. The training discusses the problem of low literacy, the population of adult new readers and provides a variety of tools and techniques to use in tutoring sessions. 


Tutoring Process


After completing the initial tutor training, volunteers are matched with adult learners. The time it to takes to be matched depends on the schedules of both the tutor and learner. Most tutoring is done one-to-one; however, many programs offer the option of working in small groups. Tutors and learners typically meet between one and three hours a week. Usually, programs require a commitment of three to six months from both tutors and learners.


Additional Volunteer Opportunities


Many programs also need volunteers for other types of work, such as help with mailings, PR activities, special events and serving on Boards and Advisory Committees. Volunteers interested in helping with the cause of literacy, but unable to make the time commitment involved in tutoring, should consider these options.

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LVI began by working with just four LVA programs, and today provides an array of resources and services to staff, tutors, and students in adult literacy programs statewide.


Literacy Volunteers of Illinois
100 S. State St., Suite 437
Chicago, IL 60603
Phone: 312-857-1582

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