While DC has one of the highest numbers of millionaires per capita, 17.4% of adults here live in poverty – and poverty is a leading indicator of low literacy. Data from the National Center for Education Statistics reveals that one in four struggles with reading, one in three with math. And low literacy skills are a barrier to just about everything – completing an education, getting a decent job, staying out of poverty. WLC removes the barrier by teaching basic literacy, reading, math, and workforce development skills to adults who read below a fifth-grade level. WLC also provides literacy instruction to immigrants who struggle to read and write in their native languages, and we specialize in working with adults who have learning disabilities such as dyslexia. Over the past 60 years, WLC has evolved from teaching basic reading and math to now teaching skills that are crucial for working, learning and living in the 21st century.
Headquarters: DC-Ward 1
Where They Operate: DC-Ward 1; WLC is located in the Shaw community and serves residents of Ward 5,6,7, and 8.
Age Groups Served: Adult (25-49)
Ethnic Groups Served: African American; Latino/Hispanic
- Improve Basic Reading Skills :
90 District adults
- Improve reading skills at least one level as measured by the CASAS (Comprehensive Adult Student Assessment Series)required for entry into District GED and job training programs:
40% of adults served
Awards & Recognition
Named "One of the best small nonprofits in the DC region" by the Catalogue for Philanthropy, 2014 & 2018
- 'I couldn't even read the diploma.' Now he struggles to learn what schools didn't teach him.
Thu Jan 18 2018, The Washington Post
The Washington Literacy Center has taught hundreds of adults to read but estimates that there are 90,000 adults in DC who are illiterate.
- $3 million or higher
- $1 million to $3 million
- The current budget for Washington Literacy Center is: $500k to $1 million
- Less than $500k
Catalogue charities range in size from $100,000 to
About the Catalogue for Philanthropy
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