Literacy Council plans workshops

By Elyssa Parnell -

By Elyssa Parnell

NEWBERRY — The Newberry County Literacy Council is gearing up for several programs for adults this fall.

Financial Literacy 101, sponsored by AmeriCorps VISTA, will start Sept. 1. April Dewalt will coordinate the program, said Barbara Chapman, director of the Literacy Council.

A similar set of workshops were held last year, but this year she said they are doing things more independently because of a new opportunity that presented itself.

Chapman said she discovered a grant from AmeriCorps VISTA while doing grant research and although she was told it was too late to apply, Chapman said she received a call the first of June that another organization did not take the grant.

“So we applied for it,” Chapman said.

The grant gave Dewalt her position as coordinator, one of the reasons that Chapman said she constantly looks for grants.

“It created a job for someone else,” Chapman said. “If I find grants that can help people get a job, then I’m going to look.”

Dewalt, who attended training in Atlanta from Aug. 24 through Aug. 27, said the goal of the workshop is to inform the community how to be financially smart — how to manage debt, how to get out of debt, credit cards and how to use them.

“We can even discuss something as simple as starting a checking account and evaluating needs versus wants,” Dewalt said.

For now, Dewalt said dates for the workshops have not been set but information will be available Sept. 1 and those interested should stop by the Newberry County Literacy Council’s Office, 1121 Caldwell St. in Newberry. Their hours are 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Dewalt also said she would be available.

Dewalt said they are looking at hosting workshops at the library, at the SC Works office and in other areas of the community once a month for the community. Different speakers could include someone from a local bank or Newberry College.

More classes

Chapman said adults looking to fine-tune computer skills can attend a free basic computer class that starts Sept. 8. The class will last about six weeks.

The class will be held at 11 a.m. and will be ongoing, depending on the learning abilities of those in the class. Sign-ups will be during business hours on Sept. 1, Chapman said.

Chapman said they could hold more than one class per week if the class increases in numbers.

Literacy Council volunteers will teach the class using the typing program Quick and Easy. The basics of using Word, typing and sending emails will be taught.

“We need technology to communicate, so we want to bring that knowledge to them,” Dewalt said.

Reach Elyssa Parnell at 803-276-0625, ext. 1868, or on Twitter @TheNBOnews.

Reach Elyssa Parnell at 803-276-0625, ext. 1868, or on Twitter @TheNBOnews.