YWCA Puts Dollar General Foundation Grant to Work

POTTSTOWN PA – A $10,000 grant to support adult literacy, distributed last month by the Dollar General Literacy Foundation to the YWCA Tri-County Area, continues to help YW students. The agency’s classes provide instruction in adult basic education, high school equivalency preparation and testing, and English as a second language … and they’re already scheduled into mid-2023, its website shows.

Classes operate in two YW Adult Education and Training Center locations: the Pottstown Integrated Wellness Complex, 724 N. Adams St.; and at the former Sacred Heart Hospital, 1430 DeKalb St. in Norristown. Current sessions began this month, and run through September (2022). Others are planned for October through December, January through April (2023), and April into June.

Its education is free, and open to those in need. Adult students are regularly being enrolled for coming sessions, the YW said. They can attend morning, afternoon, or evening classes to suit their schedules, or may join hybrid or virtual classes. For more information, call 610-326-7323 in Pottstown or 610-427-5830 in Norristown, or send an e-mail inquiry to ETC@ywcatricountyarea.org.

How the grant is being used

The grant was part of $10.5 million in donations the foundation announced June 22 to assist summer, family, and adult literacy programs nationwide. Locally it supplements education funding the YWCA also receives from the Pennsylvania Department of Education, other private foundations, and individual donors.

Dollar General’s gift ensures “students have up-to-date texts and curricula,” and also “will help provide laptops for our students to use in the classroom as they gain 21st Century digital skills,” center Senior Director Roni Barna explained. The material and machines “prepare students to earn high school diplomas and transition to jobs, training, and post-secondary education,” she said.

Besides offering lessons intended to meet learners’ needs, the YW reported its support advisers also work with students to create individual education and career goals, and to address any challenges that may arise.

“We are extremely grateful for (the foundation’s) continued support,” Barna added.

The agency’s efforts please the grantor, too. Dollar General operates retail stores in Pottstown, Lower Pottsgrove, Stowe, Royersford, Boyertown, Douglassville, and Birdsboro, and its foundation “has been proud to invest in literacy and education programs in our hometown communities” for more than 30 years, Executive Director Denine Torr said.

“As we work to create access to high-quality instruction for all individuals,” Torr noted, “we share our gratitude for the educators who are working to uplift and empower others.”

Photo by Artem Maltsev via Unsplash, used under license