Since 1977 Kingston Literacy & Skills (KL&S), a provincially funded not-for-profit organization, has been running their operations in Lennox & Addington County.
With a variety of different courses, job skill training and other curriculums, they’re all free of charge and for 18 years and up.
KL&S support and encourage adults with low literacy skills and work with them to achieve their goals of further education, employment or independence.
“We offer a variety of different courses, job skill training such as retail and point of sale teaching people money mass and how to use cash registers,” said Amanda Morrison, administrator for KL&S out of the Napanee office. “We have some other curriculums to kind of walk people through the expectations of skill trades and day care workers and health care sector, we also do upgrading for math and English for anyone who is either looking for college prep or to go back and do their GED through Gateway Technical College. We also work closely with Career Edge.”
KL&S strives to continually provide innovative programming that meets the needs of students in order to help them realize their goals. Some of their programs have been developed in partnership and through consultation with Ontario Works, Kingston Community Health Centre, Kingston Employment Youth Services, and Re-Start.
The KL&S, who have an office in Napanee at 9 Advance Ave, also offer a computer class which has been a popular pick which teaches Microsoft Word software and are also teaching people how to use their tablets properly and how to protect themselves online.
“We also have a computer class that’s been really popular,” Morrison expressed. “We teach the basics of how to use Microsoft Word software, we’re also working with smart technology and teaching people how to use their tablets properly and how to protect themselves online, improve their typing skills. All things to help encourage employability here in town and all of our classes are absolutely free.”
KL&S have changed their curriculums and modified them so they can offer remote learning for people who don’t feel comfortable coming in and working with a person.
The KL&S also have long-standing partnerships with St. Lawrence College, the Limestone District School Board, the Algonquin and Lakeshore Catholic District School Board, Kingston Frontenac Public Library, Queen’s University and the municipalities they serve.
With being a not-for-profit they rely on the referrals of other agencies, which has been hard with the COVID closure. And during the lockdown they were still operating, just not face-to-face.
“As a referral based agency it’s hard to get those numbers up,” stated Morrison. “And a lot of people don’t seem to know who we are and what we do and I’ve only been here about a year so I’m trying to get the word out there because I think we have a lot of value a lot of people could definitely use and maybe just don’t know about it. We have a Facebook page, so I’m just trying to reach the people who maybe don’t have social media.”
KL&S’s history of community support, successful volunteer recruitment and management, and effective working partnerships with a variety of organizations in Kingston and surrounding area has contributed to their longevity and their positive impact on the communities they serve.
For more information on KL&S visit www.klsread.ca