Media and celebrities were particularly notable supporters of literacy in the 1980s and 90s.
- A 1992 Bangor Daily News supplement, “Literacy and You” included articles by students, explaining how Literacy Volunteers had changed their lives. It also provided advice to parents on how to support their children’s literacy and where to find help.
- The BDN helped pay for students to attend national conferences. Employees were urged to become tutors.
- Lowell Kjenstad wrote a regular BDN column on volunteerism that often featured Literacy Volunteers.
- In 1986, President Reagan and celebrities like Oprah Winfrey supported the Project on Literacy in the US. News stories and feature shows created awareness. ABC and PBS ran a 6-week “Learn to Read” series, with lessons and articles in the Bangor Daily News.
Eloise worked at the BDN and was instrumental in maintaining connections between the paper and Literacy Volunteers. That included making office space available for meetings and tutoring. She also served on our board.
She tutored several students. Eloise remembers one in particular. At a national conference, Eloise and the student went into a bookstore, and Eloise realized that the student had never been inside a bookstore before.
For her work with us and in other community organizations, Eloise received Channel 2’s “2 Those Who Care” Jefferson Award in 1992.