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A place to get ABE news from across Minnesota.

Nominations Due March 17! - By Cathy Grady, Literacy Services Director

Feelings of gratitude are good for the soul – and showing gratitude has been linked to increased happiness. So if you weren’t already planning to honor someone in your program with an award this year, you have even more reason to do so! 

Now through March 17, the Minnesota Literacy Council is accepting nominations for our annual awards for outstanding learners, community partners or volunteers who make a difference in your program and inspire you and your colleagues every day. Awards will be presented at the annual Journeys Reading and Awards Ceremony on Thursday, May 25 at 6:00 pm at the Loft Literary Center in Minneapolis. The evening will begin with a ceremony where adult literacy students, volunteers, and community partners will receive awards recognizing their outstanding achievements.

These awards include:

  • Outstanding Volunteer for those who contribute a high quality and quantity of unique, innovative, and creative volunteer service.
  • Outstanding Learner for learners that have made a unique, innovative or creative impact on adult literacy and who have a strong dedication to service as a volunteer and a leader among peers. Two Outstanding Learner Award recipients will be selected to receive a $250 Lucille Fischer Award.
  • Community Partner Award to honor organizations, funders and ad hoc committees that have positively influenced adult literacy in Minnesota. Community partners should have demonstrated unique, innovative, or creative contributions and show dedication through length of service and the depth of partnership with an ABE program.
  • Volunteer Service Hour Award for ABE volunteers who have reached the 1,000-hour tutoring milestone and who have shown a dedication to voluntary service to adult literacy.
  • The Thomas M. Kraemer Memorial Education Grant Fund provides financial assistance to adult learners in Minnesota who are pursing some form of further education in order to improve their literacy or job skills. Grants of $250 to $750 are awarded to adult learners who have received literacy education through an ABE program.

In addition to the awards ceremony, the May 25 event will feature student readings, where nearly 100 adult literacy learners will share their original stories and poems. Several of the readers will be authors featured in Journeys, An Anthology of Adult Student Writings. All of them are adult literacy students enrolled in English Language, GED, reading and other Adult Basic Education classes across the state. 

Journeys is an annual publication by the Minnesota Literacy Council that includes stories of hope, loss, and struggle, alongside poignant reflections of everyday life written by Minnesotans who are also adult learners. Some stories are written by immigrants or refugees writing in their second or third language, while others are sharing their writing for the first time after years of frustration and anxiety attributed to low literacy skills. The book will be available at the event and online at the MLC website.

Please submit your award nominations by Monday, March 17 at 5:00 p.m. Details about the awards can be found at Awardees are selected by a panel of ABE professionals and literacy council board members. Award recipients and their nominators will be notified by the end of April.