Focus on the Upstate 107 - Greenville Literacy Association - 6/10/18

Focus on the Upstate
Sunday, June 10th
Development Coordinator Kim Phillips prepares us for the Really Good, Really Big, Really Cheap Book Sale coming up in August and describes how the book sale proceeds fund GLA's educational efforts throughout the Upstate.

Transcript - Not for consumer use. Robot overlords only. Will not be accurate.

Welcome to focus on the upstate a program dedicated to informing you about organizations that serve our community. How you can get involved with him. Here's your host Chris Evans. Good morning and welcome to focus on the upstate my name's Chris Evans to demy guessed is Ken Phillips the development coordinator at the green the literacy association good morning camp. And thank you for being here. It's been awhile since I've had agreed the literacy association on and I was just thinking the other day. That book sales gotta be coming around again soon. Maria it's trees and I didn't it's creek and up to when we're gonna talk about that but I wanna start with deal with the first question that a normally ask which is what do you do and who do you do it for tell us about the green polluters he association just for those of us. Who don't know about it. Controllers association has been around over fifty years and they've been serving the Greenville county community. In. DSL English as a second language and helping folks get their ged. Adult basic education. And a myriad of other things. Tell us about your history with a group delivers his as he would tell me before the show even their seventeen year until we know the circus sale has aired this over the sale yet this is the seventeenth year for the sale sale he might or twelfth sale you are twelve sales yeah it is twelve yes OK okay and I've been back in the back we're all the books command and things like that for eleven years. And dead this year they moved me to the front. And okay over the this year I get sent to play up in the front where there's air conditioning. A and I'm not dusty and sweating at the end of my day right. Now agree illiteracy is a decision a lot of times when people hear the word literacy they just the they think of complete illiteracy can't read can't write. And and I and I know that that's something that he's your public service announcements and things like staff from the ad council you know and league encouraging people to two. Learned that sort of stuff. How big a problem is that sort of illiteracy. In society these days. I'm I think it's it's bigger than most people realize. We do get all levels of literacy in I think what people forget is that. It starts at home. And they have to be willing to ask for help and so sometimes he'll be the person not person who can't read that the person who wants to help them learn to reach rendering the men. And there's all levels he'll get will get all that's one of the things that we do when they come to say hey I want to learn to read or want to give my ged. Is we test them. To see where they are opposite because each each per grimaced personalized because we are not a critique her society. Right and so we want that students coming again. We get all ages two which is pretty fantastic. We want them to get the help that they need. You know so we knew we tests and to see where they're reading and see where they're writing and then see where they need to do to get to where they wanna be. I'm because everybody's out in game is not the same brand and for some people they want you know they largest beaver re to enjoy. But you know a lot of them aren't a lot of the folks are coming and they're working networks are GE. So that they can go to college. Or they're working towards something to help them in their job and so it's pretty an answer for staying. In part of the reason I ask that is because I wonder illiteracy is the kind of thing that that those who can't read came right. Really take for granted you know I mean it's it's just something you do automatically Barack. And I wonder. How old people who who don't have that kind of advantage function in society might might. Slight digression my grandfather had alzheimer's disease and one of the things that I learned about that especially in the early stages is that. You realize that you don't know something or somebody that you should and see fake it. You realize that you should know it but you don't answer you pretend that you do and you can get by with a lot doing that and I imagine it's the same way. With reading and writing there that the people. There may be certain amount of embarrassment you know go with the with not being able to rewrite. And that they think. They found ways to compensate for its our friends. Let me talk to your Smartphone and say. Where is this or where is that our unity dialed this person so if you have someone who's already put the phone numbers in your found. Things like that you don't have to now. Yeah and so I think that there's any compensate they always have. And you know I think that we find trust a sharp older. People that come in they worked in mills and they they might have been had a rural. You know upbringing and sure they didn't have the advantages and then with are the folks are trying to get their ged. They were just passed just passed and passed and so they you know they just stopped coming. And so now I think you know they come here and we try and help them. Well you mentioned the technology that we have what you a lot of times we think of these technological advancements voice activation you know which recognition that kind of thing. As conveniences. For people by its. I wonder if play I mentioned that you know you PSAs about you know the problem of illiteracy in and learning to read and write getting your ged things like that. But I wonder if if we don't kinda sending a mixed message as a society with that with you know icons on nine cash registers instead of instead of words you have to know at a burger is just push the picture again. And a it it's. It's a problem as I'm going away what and that's and that I guess is my question is how much how much is illiteracy. A societal problem rather than an individual problem. I'm not sure and the answer that question. Karen Hudson could. But it's interesting to get to contemplate. But one of the things that I didn't wanna talk about and you mentioned is that says that you have all ages the illiteracy illiteracy I should say. Is not just a problem for young people it's not just that it did the fifteen year old high school drop out. For whatever reason is not still in school and an hasn't completed their education. Yet it was this week I was out walking for the office and I was hearing this gentleman read. And so I'm I'm Nancy. And so he was in the library and so I just kinda. To the corner and walked through and it was a gentleman he is probably in the sixties. He and his tutor was sitting right next to him and they had pages spread out. And they were walking through. Word by word and you can see how hard he was working yeah. To get those words to know what that meant and I'm just sitting here thinking. Hat so awesome. You know to sit there and realize that this this man. And able to put away the embarrassment tests say. It doesn't matter when anybody else thinks I want to learn again how to read it I wanna know what this words sets. Just. That's why we're here yeah. You know I it's in it's just one facet of what GLA does but it's a very important facet I just think it's and I just just think it's amazing that's who we are pet people caught me at the sale. And say I shot. And our sales at yourself every year because you taught my grandfather. Ronald. And an hour just you know we just take that that so for granite yeah I can just pick this paper that sit in front of me and I can recognize everywhere in front of me. That that's a gift we take for Graham had. And I'm glad that we're here are so that we can help those that do want ten now how. How much how can do that yeah and they do a lot of good to some group classes but sometimes that most of that is done one on one. Well and it in this fascinating to hear about those sorts of legacy. You know people that you got you know that that they have somebody there but they've already. Known how to read and write but somebody in their family. Didn't end Indian and GO I was able to help them. There's a perm we have our that we partner with works with parents and and the worst in their kids because a lot of these kids. They're getting at school and so their breather given books to parents that the kids to kids are helping them. And they're hungry children to learn to read it kind of working together. Well and and that leads into another thing that kid that you kind of mentioned but I Philly we should talk about is that. We've mentioned that one of the facets is helping people who can't read or write at all. But that's not the only thing the GLA does he guys you mentioned a ged. She d.s probably our biggest OK at the color of adult basic education. Comment basically. We get a lot of dropouts and all ages and that yeah that first 11 reason or another they had to go to work or whatever. They stopped their education and so we have a 32 graduates thirty should are so far and our fiscal year have gotten ged. And we had our graduation new last week I think a week before that. And so we DG DGE Pratt and we do a citizenship. It's must try to get to citizenship or. ESL which is English as a second language satellite which and that's say that's another really big sat part of GLA. And that's another one that I wanted to mention specifically because. With so many different cultures that they come to America people might be literate in their own language. But the predominant language in America is English and if you can't rewrite English here to severe disadvantage. That's why I have Google translate on my phone. What I set up different asking people walking in and you think. Automatically they're going to be speaking Spanish that they doubt we have and I commend speaking Spanish and from the Arab. Languages and Korean. And a lot of the other you know different Asian mainland Chinese Japanese sure. And that is that's interesting and they are all ages two coming in you get the younger ones that wanna learn English. But you get them all up and into the senior citizen age which is wonderful. You know I think that you know they they coming classes they bond as a group. And and even the teachers and tutors to do that are excited. To help them learn English and it's sometimes they're excited to learn tap other language Bryant right. And I know I did an interview awhile and it's been awhile now with the international association I know they have. Classes for people learning other languages you know a native speakers can teach. English speakers their language in native English speakers can teach you know other people how to speak English. Do you do any partnership with the with the international association or or any other organizations. I know that we have one with a found that Hispanic alliance OK we were with all the other liking had a ministries where the hell tour. Greenville tax cuts and stabbed where it's it's kind of and a melting pot because we are I mean we all have to help one another you don't send us students we send them students and then. We have SE works so come and say sure hate you we need and so when he stood to work on this Dawson and tasks. And so it is a community effort you know we are not an island. You know it takes everybody working together to help decent you know your your fellow man to get where they wanna cattle. Brad and Adam I think that's the best that's the most exciting thing about greens illiteracy and Greenville county is the fact that you know what. We aren't the only resource here and we worked together with others so that you if we can't do what she needs to do. Which we can't be fine and sure who who you need to see who we need to talk to. Well and I've done other interviews we is a miracle really mentioned they focus on homelessness. On the goodwill focuses on and on employing people and training people to take jobs and it occurs to me that literacy is so important. An aspect to all of those things I mean if you are. Illiterate if you can't reader writes you gonna have a hard time holding a job. And if you have a hard time holding a job you gonna have a hard time keeping house if you it can't read at least. To sign the contract I have no idea what you're signing EL IE I mean it it's it's such an important yet it's a ripple purples and say it's one of those things that you capped a starting point have. Carried what's in front of me and if I can read what's in front of me. Then everything else kind of reports out from that. And I mean it's it's the quality of life issue. You know how hard you're breathing affects your quality of life you know and being able to write your name and no knowing what you are writing it's pretty it's pretty amazing. Now you mentioned that dream a literacy association has been around for fifty years with the 52 or 53 they sort of in 1965. Wow. After they've been here don't. And and you've been with the organization twelve years and how is he organization changed over just the last dozen years you've been awhile you have to adapt. We've area that's one of the things I've seen especially. Especially with funding and things like that you because there's we're not because we're not the only fish in the sea. You know everybody's you know needs needs funding and so how we do that has changed dramatically. You know we can't just say over just gonna do this. Or righteous right grants right EO for this year we we have an Amazon store. We really she's redo. We have the book sale we have to be. And I was gonna ask you about that Ed that was a just few months ago to think. I and I remember her remembered getting. A note in my email that that did you know said it's coming up and I thought oh I should have fled GO laying on T you to talk about this. And as it happened night I already had too many interviews books and I wasn't gonna be able to get you on before the before the event. But I'd like to hear about it after the fact how did ago. I was not there you okay cut that LR who's having twins was congratulations okay. She's been a guest on here where she's at she's fantastic and I hate that she's not here helping me. But she'd ash that was her that's her baby break and the funniest thing for me was the different names of the one Essex in my head is the flanker bees. That's going to be fairly name every teens have their own name. And so if they were the it was a lot of sign that it looked like a lot of fun. I you know that's why I have spell check on my share everything I have because I am gets dollar and is that am I it's just one of those things I think we've had to look at. You know if we're gonna keep GLA stores open how are we gonna do that didn't. And you know because technology is changing how we help our students you know use that technology to help them get further so it's it's it's when they're saying is not. Getting east second this is the way we've always done it. If you can say okay we've done it this way but maybe there's a better way. And we tried to do is act. I'm not sure that we're always successful but we sure do try to. And there's always more than one way to look at it you know how. Yeah that's why Amazon that's where we we are doing everything through just the book sales first the books that we get a lot of books have value. And so half Colombian Amazon. Six years I think without really an hour long yes and you can actually even if you don't you know if shop our book sales hi I'm Amazon. He can actually help GLA to Amazon's miles per. Yes and say gee LA is on there and Sochi look for a few shopping you get there that's just it's just another avenue for someone else to. Help us and for those who don't know I'm familiar with this if you go to instead of just going to And eager to smile as semi elite dot and you can pick. An organization. That's to donate to whenever you purchase something from Amazon. Up portion of that purchase Amazon donate to that organization the chief chosen. And there's all manner of of organizations just around under the upstate only. And extent of there's not it's really awesome I just I'd had had not been aware of it. Existing firm in just the last couple years and. They actually got a check in the mail this week from Amazon for really it was a huge check hats like reminiscing that it's I can type by every little bit. That's exactly residents say every little bit helps and so if nothing else that's away for a for listeners to you would to help donate to GLA is it is just by going to smile dot And and it's very easy to Amazon website is great they didn't walk puree through ease picture organization and then whenever you buy something for Amazon. It says it makes donation. And our our biggest issue right now starts. And starts now is our book drive we re at right now we should put out about a 140000 bucks us every sale. And over half of those books are collected in a seven week period tie. As we take books all year at the McAllister square location. Manager Friday night and S 101000 books a week over the seven was how to act and so it's it's a lot of work it's a lot of fun. But that's me is first thing that dream a community is that's that's where they can really help us at least for them. Between I think June 11 through July 27. We have donation sites OK come right now actually didn't you condone you can take everything to him and the council square location they can go on our web site. Under is a list of areas distances in the community that are and have a donation box. Right there in their entryway as banks I think we have on star Max whole foods. There's a it is a list but that's really where the community just reeling. Its it would every year they do this every year. We get about. 70000 books plus. Which is amazed. Immediately impressive if you guys did that once in fact this is every you do that every year for a troops and twelve years now ordered seventeen I guess yeah did the twelve years that you've been there and hire more. I mean thousands and thousands and thousands of books come through. I had a little hot one at a time okay how I cello and I went out and do my and we didn't have his demise training for the volunteers we have volunteers at work all year. There we have had a group of volunteers that come in just during the summer. And I was telling when you're looking don't worry about all the books that are set Evernote and that she got to take care what's the book and from India you know. Does it need to be cleaned. Does need to have the paper taken out of that sure and how we find some interesting things in books. Glad you used dat dat Booker at their claim that price that and then we put it on a shelf. And Adam that's it's on us things that set a week it's my favorite we could be here. That's like given birth because you've worked on this this thing all year long now in this is the culmination Nat. And then you know once the Saturday morning sale starts. EC to hordes of people coming through days it took 151000 people over the weekend. From the sale. And to see them it suggests. It's it's just amazing and knowing why you're with what they're buying. What that helps us to camp I just you know I just think that's anything. I was gonna say that that's seems like I may be one thing to see that many people in a room with that many books you know shopping but it's gotta have. Even it Ed a different hue to it effort for somebody like you because you know what's gonna happen after all that. But it's on things I know the difference that that makes that event that books that they picked up for a dollar or. That that that pile they take up and they spend you know we take credit card so people buy more. I know what that means. To a student who gets to come to class. And to you to be able to add to keep the lights thought I just you know I I think people fear forget. That hates it's a bookseller that's fantastic but the reason behind the books to else is just as awesome yeah you know gotten to know that you know these. We're helping our community. Be better to better. And you know we are in Greenville is growing its in unbelievably. Growing. And that gives us our people to help. In the upstate yet and him we've we've danced around we would probably ought to talk about him before we run out of time here this really good really big really cheap books I think I've got those in the door I was an asset order out I I've all I've done that a few times and I think that trays of really good really they really cheap book sale. Accepting donations now he says he's got a big push coming up in June and July it's into a forum for donations and in the book sale is actually win. The book sale is August 11 and into Saturday and we have a preview party on August 10 which is a ticketed event. That link should be up on our web site pretty soon you and then Sunday is kind of I called the discount day. Where you can get a paper bag and fill that back for ten bucks because we want them to take all the books yeah. Spend would like to not have to touch the looks again right please take them home I. Cashing out so it's it's it's a lot of fine. The hours are 830 to four. On Saturday you and one to four on Sunday. 8830 to four on Saturday and 1241. PM to 4 PM on Sunday and that's August 11 and twelfth but he said. And the ticketed event tell us what that's clay court what's it like to be there on the. It's it's a lot of people come because it's not the crush. Folks. There's like lighter car aren't the words excuse me I can't say that word order so I'll help us think you gotta match. And stuff to drink it it's considered pretty it's a party it's music. It's you know it's it's not. There's usually about 400. Or so folks sensitive fifteen. You. Thousands thank you Al. Is such a little bit it's a little bit more laid back. The ticket prices are 35 dollars for single and sixty per couple you can eating EK and are those online. If you by the Mott at the door at the prices a little higher but I'm not sure what that they share. But it's fun bins and at the web say we should mention Greeneville literacy dot org. And that will have all your. Event information sparse Thai names. Dates that they they're gonna have a link are pretty soon for volunteering for setup day of sale that'll be up in the next couple of weeks. And it's it's I have got to know a lot of our volunteers that it's pretty awesome. And you dissed the sale. It's important it's important that we have it's important that were able to do it because of what it debt. Yes it is gonna get a really good deal on a book that's outstanding. But somebody else is going to be able to get their education. Yes even announced and it is well and speaking of really good deals and no in the past you've done an early bird special on Saturday is that he. Doing that again this year app that's at 730. Okay. And at certain dollars to get and they stinker Nancy get you know like at our head it's time for everybody else need to look first yes you do and it's it is so much fun. It's our wishes that actually never been to McAllister square. It's like a cross says yes trust in the center is a stage. And I always get on the stage before the doors open because I love. To see either running people yes. And it's just a rush of humanity at its it well you know they're excited you know they're hoping to find whatever it is there. And and so I I just find that. Just I'm an amazing and I just love it took. So the really good really big really cheap book's sale coming up August 11 and twelfth you can get tickets for the August 10 pre party. Evening soiree hit at Greenville litter seed dot org you can also find more information on donating. Either money or books or time if you don't volunteer. Through that website greens illiteracy dot org. Tim Phillips the development coordinator for the Greenville literacy association has been my guest today thank you very much for being here can really appreciate you having me on has been my pleasure. I'm Chris Evans and this has been focus on the upstate. You've been listening to focus on the upstate with Chris Evans if you would like more information on today's topic email Chris. C Evans