The Literacy Alliance serves any adult in Northeast Florida over the age of 16, and our students usually have a goal in mind when they enroll. New students often want to improve their literacy skills, obtain a high-school diploma, increase their job readiness, be active in their community, and many other goals.

Often they want to improve their skills to find a job, get promoted at work, or gain a career license. Just as often, they have more personal goals such as reading the newspaper, engaging in their community, or reading with their children and grandchildren.

Whatever goal they have in mind, we have a program that will help them achieve it and succeed.

Programming takes place throughout the community with flexible schedules and locations convenient for adult learners. Most programs take place at the Jessie Ball duPont Center in downtown Jacksonville. Other locations include Northside Community Involvement, the Urban League Springfield Community Center, and multipile loations with the Jacksonville Housing Authority. Volunteer tutors meet with students in public locations, often in their neighborhoods, such as library branches, churches, and coffee shops. Additional sites for incarcerated adults are offered at all Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office facilities and the Jacksonville Reentry Center.

All program options are typically “open enrollment” meaning students can start any time and stop temporarily if needed due to life, family or work changes with an open invitation to return whenever they are ready.

Adult Literacy

Literacy Essentials: Reading, Writing, and Understanding

Adult literacy instruction incorporates a variety of engaging activities to build foundational reading, writing, comprehension and math skills. Activities involved include, but are not limted to:

  • Phonics and Phonemic Awareness: Building blocks of reading, activities can involve matching letters to sounds, blending sounds to form words, and segmenting words into sounds.

  • Sight Word Recognition: Reinforcing frequently used words that can’t be sounded out, instructors and tutors might use flashcards, games like bingo, or fill-in-the-blank exercises.

  • Reading Comprehension: Using age-appropriate, relevant, and contextual materials like job applications, training materials, newspaper articles, or recipes, instructors and tutors guide students through understanding the text’s meaning through discussions and answering questions.

  • Vocabulary Building: Learning new words is essential. Interactive exercises like matching definitions or creating sentences with new words can be used.

  • Writing Activities: From sentence starters to short paragraphs about daily routines or hobbies, writing practice allows students to apply their learned skills.

  • Technology Integration: Applying basic literacy skills to use of digital technology for finding, using and engaging with content online or in digital formats. Instuction incorporates computers, tablets, and smart phones to use educational software, practicing typing skills, creating digital documents, working with digital information.

  • Engagement, Games and Group Activities: Adult learners learn best when it is engaging and fun. Literacy Alliance instructors don’t lecture from the front of the class, they are actively involved and engaged with students through interactive excercises including literacy related games, group discussions, and collaborative projects to make the experience engaging and social.

High School Completion

Second Chances, Brighter Futures: Adult Diploma Completion

Adults who did not attain a high-school diploma can reach that milestone through the Literacy Alliance. Options include GED prep classes, tutoring, and online learning.

Adult learners seeking their high school diploma at the Literacy Alliance benefit from a mix of academic support and supportive activities to foster learning that makes their journey successful. Here are some examples of activities involved in helping them:

Academic Support:

  • Coursework: Adults can take classes online or in-person at small group classes or tutoring sites throughout the community that are designed for their pace and learning style. These cover core subjects like Reasoning Through Language Arts (RLA), math, science, and social studies.
  • Skill-Based Learning: Going beyond memorization, instructors and tutors focus on building critical thinking skills, problem-solving approaches, and effective communication through activities like project work, presentations, and essay writing.
  • Contextual Learning: Learning takes into account the already rich and deep experience of adult learners. Incorporating this experience into the learning recognizes knowledge and skills already gained through work experience, military service, or previous training, that can lead to attaining goals quicker.
  • Tutoring and Study Skills Workshops: Personalized support is crucial. Tutors provide one-on-one help with challenging concepts, while study skills workshops equip adults with effective time management, note-taking, and test-taking strategies.a

Supportive Activities:

  • Goal Setting and Planning: Adult learners often juggle work, family, and other commitments. Literacy Alliance instruction helps them set realistic goals and create personalized study plans to achieve their diploma efficiently.
  • Time Management: Balancing studies with other responsibilities can be tricky. Workshops or group discussions equip adults with time management techniques and study skills to make the most of their time.
  • Motivation and Encouragement: Earning a diploma while managing adult life takes dedication. The Literacy Alliance provides a supportive group learning environment that adapts to the students’ schedules and needs as well as tutors and success coaches to keep motivation high and celebrate achievements.

By combining strong academic support with practical tools and a supportive environment, the Literacy Alliance effectively helps adults achieve their goal of earning a high school diploma.

Digital Literacy

Bridging the Digital Divide: Empowering Adult Learners

The Literacy Alliance provides a dedicated local digital literacy program that empowers adult learners with the digital skills they need to thrive in today’s world. Through a combination of hands-on workshops, a computer learning lab, and supportive guidance, participants gain confidence using technology for everyday tasks, career advancement, and personal fulfillment.

The program focuses on:

  • Essential Computer Skills: Learn to navigate computers, use email, and browse the internet safely.
  • Communication and Collaboration: Master online communication tools like video conferencing and social media for work and personal connections.
  • Job Search and Career Development: Explore online resources for job searching, building resumes, and applying online.
  • Financial Literacy and Online Banking: Gain confidence managing finances digitally.
  • Digital Safety and Security: Learn how to protect your information and navigate the online world safely.
  • Finding Accurate Information: Learn basic research skills to find information that can be trusted to provide complete and accurate information regarding the nature of a student’s question.

With a patient, learner-centered approach, this program bridges the digital divide, increases digital equity and unlocks a world of possibilities for adult learners.

Career Coaching and Certifications

Empower Your Future: Job Training & Career Readiness

This career readiness instruction at the Literacy Alliance equips adult learners with the skills and certifications needed to launch a fulfilling career in the food service industry. Students gain basic literacy oriented job skils training as well as the option to participate in industry-recognized credentials that will make you a competitive candidate in today’s job market.

The program offers:

  • Job Readiness Skills: Through development of literacy oriented job skills and traditional employability “soft skills”, adult learners develop experience in working in a professional job setting as well as learn how to find and apply for jobs, develop resumes, and interview effectively. Learning tools include the Workforce Atlas research tool from ProLiteracy as well as NorthStar Digital Literacy to learn office related computer skills.
  • ServeSafe® Certification: Adult learners can master safe food handling practices to ensure food safety and customer well-being. This nationally recognized certification is required by many food service establishments.

  • CyberCitizen Certification: Adult learners develop essential computer skills for the workplace. Learn basic computer operations, navigate the internet effectively, and explore online communication tools to excel in a digital work environment.

The Literacy Alliance’s job readiness component provides a one-stop shop for adults to build their skills and attain certificates that can launch them into a career path that provides economic security. Students gain valuable certifications, practical skills, and the confidence to succeed in your culinary career.


English Language Learning

Building Your English: Communication Skills for Everyday Life

This friendly program is designed for adult learners who want to improve their English language skills and feel more confident communicating in everyday situations. Through a supportive and practical approach, adult students gain the tools they need to:

  • Speak Clearly and Confidently: Practice pronunciation, conversation starters, and everyday expressions to improve your spoken English.
  • Understand Everyday English: Develop listening skills to comprehend conversations, announcements, and instructions in English.
  • Read and Write with Confidence: Learn essential vocabulary and grammar to read important documents, write clear messages, and participate in basic written communication.
  • Navigate Your Community: Build the English skills needed to interact with confidence in everyday situations like shopping, using public transportation, or talking with neighbors.
  • Prepare for the Future: Whether your goal is to pursue further education, improve job opportunities, or simply connect with your community, this program equips you with the foundational English skills to achieve your goals.

This welcoming program uses real-life scenarios, interactive activities, and small group discussions to make learning English engaging and rewarding. Join us and unlock a world of possibilities!

Financial Literacy

Financial Freedom: Building a Secure Future

This program equips adult learners with the knowledge and skills to manage their finances confidently. Delivered in a clear, accessible way, participants gain practical tools to navigate everyday financial situations and build a secure future.

The program covers:

  • Building a Budget: Learn to track income and expenses, and create a realistic spending plan.
  • Understanding Debt: Explore different types of debt, develop strategies for repayment, and build good credit.
  • Saving and Investing: Discover the power of saving for short- and long-term goals, explore different saving and investment options.
  • Banking Basics: Manage bank accounts, understand different types of accounts, and learn about safe online banking practices.
  • Avoiding Scams and Identity Theft: Gain awareness of common financial scams and identity theft, and learn how to protect yourself.

Through interactive workshops, coaching in the learning lab, and individual tutoring that includes discussions and real-life scenarios, this program empowers adult learners to take control of their finances and achieve their financial goals.

This portion of our programming is made possible by grants from Wells Fargo and the Florida Literacy Coalition.

Health Literacy

Navigating Health: Making Informed Choices

This program empowers students to take charge of your health! Designed for adult learners, the learning equips students with the knowledge and skills to navigate the healthcare system confidently and make informed decisions about your well-being.

The program covers:

  • Understanding Medical Information: Learn to read and interpret medical documents, lab results, and medication instructions.
  • Healthy Communication with Providers: Develop effective communication skills to express your concerns clearly and ask informed questions during doctor visits.
  • Preventive Care and Healthy Habits: Explore strategies for disease prevention, healthy eating, and maintaining an active lifestyle.
  • Understanding Common Health Conditions: Gain basic knowledge about common health concerns, their symptoms, and potential treatments.
  • Navigating Healthcare Resources: Discover community resources, online tools, and support groups to manage your health effectively.

Through interactive activities, clear explanations, and practical exercises, this program empowers you to become an active participant in your own healthcare journey.

The Literacy Alliance’s Health LIteracy offerings are made possible by support from Florida Blue and the Florida Literacy Coalition.

Family Literacy

Learning Together: Building a Strong Literacy Foundation for Families

This program fosters a love of learning for the whole family! Parents that are also adult learners strengthen their literacy skills and creating lasting memories.

What adult students will experience:

  • Engaging Activities: Interactive workshops, story time, and fun learning activities create a positive and supportive environment for all ages.
  • Building Reading Skills: Parents develop strategies to help children learn to read and enjoy books, while practicing their own reading fluency.
  • Early Learning Support: Parents gain valuable tools to prepare their children for success in school, fostering a love of learning from a young age.
  • Family Bonding: Fostering shared learning experiences with parents and children creates lasting memories and strengthen family communication.

This program celebrates the joy of learning together! It equips families with the tools and confidence to build strong literacy skills and nurture a lifelong love of reading.

What Our Students Are Saying:

I feel great about myself. I’m proud of myself. My kids are proud of me. My granddaughter is proud of me.

What Our Volunteers Are Saying:

Working with Mr. R on Monday night was a reward. He broke down in tears several times and thanked me for taking time to help him. I’ll always be inspired by individuals who want to better their lives.

V, Tutor