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Clear & Simple: Developing Effective Print Materials for Low-Literate Readers

  • Updated: 02/27/2003

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Appendix 5: Organizational Resources


Academy for Educational Development, 1255 23rd Street, N. W., Washington, D.C. 20037; (202) 884-8700.
Works with organizations to develop basic health education programs. Many efforts are international in scope.

ACTION, Director,1100 Vermont Avenue, N.W., Washington, D.C. 20525; (202) 606-4853. Supports more than 450 retired senior volunteers and more than 200 VISTA volunteers serving in adult literacy programs. Offers grants for literacy volunteer activities.

Assault on Illiteracy Program (AOIP), Executive Director, 231 West 29th Street, Room 1205, New York, NY 10001; (212) 967-4008. Nonprofit organization that targets out-of-school blacks of all ages with literacy needs. Publishes the ADVANCER, a weekly supplement distributed with black-owned community newspapers.

Association for Community-Based Education, 1805 Florida Avenue, N.W., Washington, D.C. 20009; (202) 462-6333. Provides information and support to member groups that operate outside the public education establishment. Technical assistance for community and organizational assessment is available. Has research, training, and informational materials useful in community-based settings.

Barbara Bush Foundation for Family Literacy, 1002 Wisconsin Avenue, N.W., Washington, D.C. 20007; (202) 338-2006. The Barbara Bush Foundation seeks to identify effective literacy programs, provide and send money for community planning of interagency family literacy programs; award grants to establish intergenerational literacy efforts; support training and professional development for teachers; encourage recognition of volunteers, educators, students, and effective literacy programs.

Center for Substance Abuse Prevention (CSAP) Communications Team, 7200 Wisconsin Avenue, Suite 500, Bethesda, MD 20814-4820; (301) 951-3277. A service of the Center for Substance Abuse Prevention, the CSAP Communications Team assists community-based and other programs that are working to prevent alcohol and other drug problems.

Clearinghouse on Adult Education, U.S. Department of Education, Division of Adult Education, 330 C Street, S.W., Washington, D.C. 20202-7240, Attention: Education Program Specialist; (202) 205-8270. The Clearinghouse links the adult education community with existing resources in adult education, provides information on request, provides referral services, issues publications, and refers inquiries to appropriate information sources. A bibliography that includes a section on volunteerism is available free of charge.

Contact Literacy Center, P.O. Box 81826, Lincoln, NE 68501-1826; (800) 228-8813. The hotline takes telephone calls from potential volunteer tutors nationwide and from individuals interested in enrolling in literacy programs and refers them to existing adult education programs in their communities. It operates from 6:00 a.m. to midnight, Monday through Saturday, and noon to midnight on Sundays. Spanish speakers are available.

Education Programs Associates, Suite 40, One West Campbell, Campbell, CA 95008; (408) 374-3720. Develops low to moderate reading level materials on maternal and child health, nutrition, family planning and other health-related issues. Also develops Spanish-language materials. Conducts training for health professionals on developing, selecting, and evaluating low-literacy materials and on how to identify low-literate learners.

ERIC Clearinghouse on Adult, Career, and Vocational Education, The Center on Education and Training for Employment, 1900 Kenny Road, Columbus, OH 43210-1090; (800) 848-4815. The clearinghouse provides information resources on all aspects of adult education, including adult literacy, workplace literacy, and Adult Basic Education. A list of all materials that can be ordered is available free of charge.

Health Promotion Council of Southeastern Pennsylvania. 311 South Juniper Street,Suite 308,Philadelphia,PA 19107;(215)546-1276. Develops and distributes literacy materials geared towards African-American and Latino groups. Provides seminars and workshops for health professionals on health education for nonreaders.

Institute of Lifetime Learning, American Association of Retired Persons, Program Department, 601 E Street, N.W., Washington, D.C. 20049; (202) 434-2277. The Institute, the continuing education service of AARP, works to reduce illiteracy in America.

Institute for the Study of Adult Literacy, Pennsylvania State University, Suite 209, 204 Calder Way, University Park, PA 16801-4756; (814) 863-3777. Conducts research into adult literacy; develops videotapes, PSAs and computer-assisted instruction programs to teach literacy and basic skills.

Interactive Knowledge. P.O. Box 560865, Charlotte, NC 28256; (704) 344-0055. Interactive Knowledge markets two adult literacy coursework products to education and industry: The READY Course and the New Reader Bookstore. Interactive Knowledge is also involved in the development of workplace literacy applications using new instructional technologies such as CD-ROM, digital audio, and digital video.


International Diabetes Center, 3800 Park Nicollet Boulevard, Minneapolis, MN 55416; (888) 637-2675.
The International Diabetes Center has developed a low-literacy series to help diabetes educators teach people who cannot read well.

Laubach Literacy Action, U.S. Program of Laubach Literacy International, 1320 Jamesville Avenue, P.O. Box 131, Syracuse, NY 13210; (315) 422-9121. A national nonprofit organization, Laubach Literacy tutors adults reading below the sixth-grade level.

Literacy and Health Promotion Project. College of Osteopathic Medicine, University of New England, Hills Beach Road, Biddeford, Maine, 04005-9599; (207) 283-0171. Project trains health professionals regarding low-literacy materials development and communication issues.

Literacy Research Center, Daniel A. Wagner, Director, Graduate School of Education, University of Pennsylvania, 3700 Walnut Street, Philadelphia, PA 19104. Initiates and conducts literacy research projects and provides community service through a variety of consulting and collaborative activities. Publishes the Literacy Research Newsletter.

Literacy Volunteers of America, 5795 Widewaters Parkway, Syracuse, NY 13214-1846; (315) 445-8000. A national, nonprofit organization that combats illiteracy through a network of community literacy volunteer programs.

National Coalition for Literacy, c/o American Library Association, 50 East Huron Street, Chicago, IL 60611; (312) 944-6780. Please note: the "parent" organization for the coalition changes every few years.

National Council on the Aging, Inc., 409 3rd Street, S.W., Suite 200, Washington, D.C. 20024; (202) 479-1200. Provides publications on adult literacy.

National Institute for Literacy, 800 Connecticut Avenue, N.W., Suite 200, Washington, D.C. 20206-1560; (202) 632-1500. Serves as a national focal point for research, dissemination, interagency policy development, and program evaluation on literacy. Also seeks to improve access to and enhance effectiveness of literacy and basic skills programs.

Patient Learning Associates, Inc., Four Chilham Court, Potomac, MD 20854; (301) 340-9894. Conducts workshops for health professionals on working with and better understanding low-literate learners. Offers specific guidance in the development of low- literacy print, audio, and visual materials.

Project Literacy U.S., 4802 Fifth Avenue, Pittsburgh, PA 15213; (412) 622-1492. PLUS promotes adult literacy. A joint project of the Public Broadcasting Service and the American Broadcasting Corporation, PLUS uses media to increase awareness of literacy issues and to recruit individuals into literacy training programs.

Program for Appropriate Technology in Health, 1990 M Street, N.W., Suite 700, Washington, D.C. 20036; (202) 822-0033. PATH develops low-literacy materials and trains health professionals and lay educators to develop such materials in the U.S. and abroad.


Simply Put, 427 Dock Road Cedar Run, NJ 08092; (609) 494-4880.
Revises and clarifies instructions for consumer products, health care guidelines, and patient regimens. Conducts workshops on patient/health practitioner interactions-simple principles on how to enhance the learning process.


Women of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America, 8765 West Higgins Road, Chicago, lL 60637; (312) 380-2736.
The volunteer aides program is the Nation's largest ecumenical church-sponsored literacy program.