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Vision for the Future


Amy T. Wilson

PHONE: 814-238-1809

Ruth Kistler at age 97 continues to support Mid-State Literacy Council. When asked why she started the literacy council with a motivated group of community members in 1971, she said people are missing so much because they cannot read. Celebrating 50 years of service, Mid-State Literacy Council thanks Ruth and the thousands of volunteers who tutored and financially supported our programs. We are inspired by the adults participating in the literacy council programs, inspired by their accomplishments.

Ruth’s grandfather did not learn to read, and he became a member of the school board in Tioga County to make sure that children learned to read. Literacy is a legacy, building generation upon generation. As adults at Mid-State Literacy Council learn to read better, they are happy to read to their children. It’s a cozy time. We know that reading to children leads to a positive future.

The digital era that surrounds us impacts employment and daily activities such as making appointments. People are experiencing barriers and frustration. The literacy council is expanding basic computer instruction and guidance on how to safely use technology. This is helping adults gain needed access to information and assistance. Our students are learning to apply for employment on-line and also learning how to access telehealth. A high risk adult with an infection was able to use telehealth, read the text message from the pharmacy, and safely obtain the medicine, making a full recovery. Mission accomplished. A grandmother said that our program helped her to stop being afraid of technology. She feels relieved to have a tutor answer her questions, and now she can navigate digital devices.

Reading skills are also essential for using technology and we appreciate all of our volunteers who are tutoring. Fifty new volunteers are providing instruction this spring, and we thank our training team for preparing them to teach.

A Penn State student who is teaching at the literacy council, recently donated a $195 scholarship to Mid-State Literacy Council, supporting an unemployed adult who is taking classes in our program. With more reading, writing, and English skills, the adult hopes to obtain employment. The literacy council provides scholarships to adults in need, so that all community members have the opportunity to receive one-to-one tutoring or instruction in small, personalized classes.

We are making sure that everyone can read and communicate. Because of you, Mid-State Literacy Council continues to provide the opportunity of education. Additional information is at Our blog, Literacy in Action, highlights stories of adults achieving citizenship, and the high impact the literacy programs. Ruth Kistler says she is proud of Mid-State Literacy Council. To refer an adult for tutoring or to help, please contact staff at 814-238-1809 or


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