09/02/13 — Investment: Literacy Connections helps more than just clients; it helps the county

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Investment: Literacy Connections helps more than just clients; it helps the county

The Wayne County Board of Commissioners is about to hear a presentation about why it would be worth re-instating the funding to Literacy Connections -- a community organization that helps teach reading to those who can't.

The cut was originally justified as part of a commission effort to trim the county budget -- one of several announced earlier this year.

But there are reasons to reconsider -- and they are not just that there are already 475 people benefitting from the lessons given by a group of dedicated volunteers or the number still waiting for the chance to learn.

This one is a bit selfish.

We want as many people in this county to have a working command of English and reading as possible.

People who can read can find jobs, direct their own lives and succeed in today's world. They are less dependent on government and social programs.

They are also more attractive as prospective employees and make businesses want to locate here -- because they will have access to an available and trained workforce.

And that is one of the reasons Literacy Connections started in the first place -- as a project backed by the local Chamber of Commerce.

The idea was to help create conditions where more Wayne County residents could find work and to help provide workers with the skills that businesses say they were having to teach.

No one thought the organization, which is not very old at all, would become so big, so quickly. But that is a testament to how much it is needed.

Money invested here benefits the county -- creating better economic conditions by helping residents and businesses.

That is the type of spending this county needs more of -- not less.

Literacy Connections is a group of dedicated volunteers who are trying to make a difference -- scrimping and saving to provide services to as many people as possible.

Its efforts deserve the county's support.

Published in Editorials on September 2, 2013 11:26 AM