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Four out of ten adult Canadians, age sixteen to sixty-five

- representing 9 million Canadians -

struggle with low literacy. They fall below level 3 (high school completion) on the prose literacy scale. 

What does this mean in practical terms? If you were a student of our community-based council, you may not be able to:

            Read and understand how everyday information applies to you

           Read your bank statement

            Understand your telephone bill

            Read your prescriptions, or those of someone you are caring for – even your children

            Understand ingredients on your food packages

            Figure out if you have received the correct change

            Stand up for your legal rights

Apply for a job on line; write and send your resume...or perhaps even how turn on a computer

You would find it hard to ask for help – that would mean admitting you may not be able to read, or you can’t cope with the menu options on a telephone, or that you are afraid of repeating the experiences you had when you were in school. YOU ARE NOT ALONE! The Barrie Literacy Council has helped over 1500 adults and treats each one as the valuable individual you are. In fact, last year, 16,000 hours were spent helping students. Our tutors, volunteers and staff are dedicated to helping you reach your educational goals, independence goals, or assist you on the path to employment.



The following link gives an excellent synopsis of why the Adult Literacy Issue matters to our community

Low literacy skills affect every aspect of a person’s life; family relationships, ability to get a job and be a contributing member of the community. The following information is courtesy of ABC Life Literacy Canada.

Adult literacy is often measured on a prose and document literacy scale of 1 to 5. Level 3, equivalent to high school completion, is the desired threshold for coping with the rapidly changing skill demands of a knowledge-based economy and society (International Survey of Reading Skills (ISRS), 2005)

Four out of 10 adult Canadians, age 16 to 65 - representing 9 million Canadians - struggle with low literacy. They fall below level 3 on the prose literacy scale (Adult Literacy and Life Skills (ALL) Survey, Statistics Canada and the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development, 2005).

Considering those adult Canadians with low literacy, 15 per cent have serious problems dealing with any printed materials; an additional 27 per cent can only deal with simple reading tasks (Adult Literacy and Life Skills Survey, 2005).

The Adult Literacy Issue

Literacy Across Canada


Literacy Impacts Lives





*Statistics retrieved from International Adult Literacy and Skills Survey (IALSS): Building on our competencies, 2003.