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When You Support Literacy, You Change Lives

When adults improve their literacy, the whole community benefits. An increase in adult literacy strengthens our economy, improves family welfare, and enables career growth.

Adults who didn’t complete school and/or have low literacy cost all of us. They require more funding from social services, and often lack the skills and education needed for Maine’s 21st Century workforce.

Supporting adult literacy means supporting Maine’s most precious resource: its people.

Other Opportunities to Support Our Mission

  • Donate your time. You can tutor or volunteer in other ways, including in the office or on a committee.
  • CLYNK: Hannaford’s CLYNK program allows your returnable bottles and cans to be donated to our mission. Simply get tagged bags from our office.
    • Or if you have a personal CLYNK account, you can redirect your CLYNK balance to us.  To learn how to do this, click here.
  • Amazon Smile: Use Amazon Smile and a percentage of your payment  to come to us. Look for us under Charity Lists
  • Facebook Fundraiser: Engage your contacts and use social media to promote us. You can also share our posts to raise awareness.
  • Collect new or gently used children’s books and we’ll redistribute them to needy families.

Donor Stories

Our donors are committed to improving adult literacy. Whether they’re driven by personal experience, civic duty, or seeing us in action, our donors make our work possible. Read on to learn a little more about some of our most dedicated donors.

Joe Cyr

Local entrepreneur Joe Cyr of Old Town joined his father’s transportation company in 1962. He’s been in the business for over 50 years, mostly as president. Now semi-retired, Joe and Sue, his wife, appreciate the value of literacy. They get great joy from seeing their grandchildren reading while sharing time with them at camp.

Why do they invest in Literacy Volunteers? Joe’s perspective is unique.

“We’re in the education business,” he says. “Twice a day, our buses transport 10,000 Maine children from home to school and back again. We like to give back to our community, and this is one way that we do.”

Dr. Thomas Openshaw

“Every day I see people whose health is compromised by their literacy levels,” says Dr. Tom Openshaw. A Bangor hematologist-oncologist, he sees patients on chemotherapy drugs who don’t understand the written schedule for taking the drugs correctly. Others suffer because they don’t understand the use of their pain medications, or fully grasp their treatment options.

Everything that contributes to wellness—informed self-care to prevent or cure disease, negotiating complex health care systems, using online and printed information—is difficult, if not impossible, if you don’t read well.

Better literacy can mean better health and a better life. That’s why Dr. Openshaw and his wife Alice have long supported Literacy Volunteers.

Amy Faircloth

“Every day I see people who make terrible mistakes because they can’t understand the pieces of paper that rule our lives,” says Amy Faircloth, who has practiced family law in Bangor for 25 years.

“Adults who don’t read well don’t have access to the information and services they need. Our tax dollars fill in the gaps, so the problem affects all of us.”

“There’s so much involved in being an active participant in your own life and in your community. If you can’t read well, it’s very difficult to be an active, contributing participant. And that’s why our law firm proudly supports Literacy Volunteers of Bangor.”

Susan Bennett-Armistead

“Literacy Volunteers does what every community should do: they promote the health of our community by supporting people in becoming self-sufficient. Promoting the literacy of community members gives them the skills they need to gain more skills, provide for their families, and actively engage in the development of our community. In promoting one person’s literacy, we all benefit. Literacy Volunteers is the best kind of community investment.”

Terri & Fred Wlodarski

Born in England to legally resident Poles displaced after WWII, Terri Wlodarski learned the importance of literacy as a teenager when she coached her Polish parents for their U. S. citizenship exam. Reading, writing, and American history were the topics to be tested and they were determined to pass in order to gain a permanent home.

“My father struggled trying to pronounce “Massachusetts” perfectly as one of our 13 original colonies while my mom practiced writing cursive English over and over and over to sentences that I dictated,” Terri says.

It was a lesson for a lifetime. Both Terri and her husband Fred are staunch advocates for literacy.

“I feel very comfortable asking folks to support literacy—it crosses every religion, political party, and class without preference. Supporting Literacy Volunteers of Bangor is a wonderful way to give of one’s time, gift one’s money, and consider leaving a legacy. “

Donor Roll

Our donors make THE difference. Since we receive no state or federal monies, we rely on support from individuals, businesses, and foundations.

We enthusiastically thank our supporters for their annual donations.

Our Supporters (July 1 – June 30)

2022 Donors

2021 Donors