May 27, 2002
This week, we are launching nine stories written by students from Winnipeg, Manitoba. As a special event, you can read some of the stories as well as hear them, with the audio player. The following stories were written by members of the Learner Speakers' Bureau, coordinated by Literacy Partners of Manitoba. These learners participate in different programs in the Winnipeg area. The stories from this year's Learner Speakers' Bureau graduates will be unveiled at the Winnipeg Learner Conference on May 29, 2002.
Note : The text versions that follow do not always match the audio version, because some people preferred to update their stories after the recordings.
Play an audio version of this story
My name is Sim Sellars and I go to Literacy Works Program. Did you know that there are 75,000 seniors in Manitoba who have difficulty reading and writing? I am one and my name is Sim. One night I saw on TV: it said
"Look in the Yellow Pages in the phone book - Learn to read". I found this number, 947-5757, which is the Learn Line. They referred me to WVRA, which is now called Literacy Works. I phoned the number and made an appointment with Shirley Stone, who is now my tutor.
That was the longest walk of my life. When I got to 500 Portage Avenue, the coffee shop on main floor looked like a cocktail bar, and if I was a drinker, I would have gone there and forget to go upstairs. When I got off the elevator, I looked down the hall to see a door marked WVRA. I froze. What are these people going to ask me? What will they think of a man, 67 years old, wanting to learn to read and write? They made me feel comfortable and I know I had made the right choice. After four years, I'm still here and still going strong.