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"Worldwide some 774 million adults cannot read or write. Two-thirds of these are women."

Languages Matter

Change is a Constant that Has Become a Norm

It is interesting to note that the “Report from Our Leaders” in the Centre’s 2007 annual report addressed the issue of change. And there will be big changes at the Centre with the retirement of Maureen Sanders at the end of August 2008.

Maureen has been the Executive Director of the Centre (known at that time as Prospects Literacy Association) since 1991. Early in her tenure, she became passionately interested in family literacy. She saw that adults had adult literacy programs and children had schools, but the family as a learning unit was a missing piece that needed to be addressed and supported. In 1993, Maureen delivered the first family literacy program to 8 people. In 2007, the Centre served 4,665 adults and 7,583 children through their family literacy programs.

Maureen’s vision, and her belief in the power of literacy, her passion for people and her belief in their inherent skills and strengths have made her a community builder. She continually explores innovative ideas and opportunities, and sensitizes the community to literacy and family literacy issues.

She has been instrumental in moving family literacy onto the agenda locally, provincially and nationally. Maureen is highly regarded and recognized both within the literacy field and beyond, and is often invited to participate on national and provincial committees addressing the current state of literacy.

“I look forward to spending more time with my grandchildren — they are only young for a very short time” commented Maureen when announcing her retirement. Although she is leaving her official duties at the Centre, Maureen will continue to work on Foundations in Family Literacy, a national training project sponsored by the Centre and on other initiatives that support the ongoing development of the family literacy field.

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