The Boys and Girls Clubs of Cape Breton is committed to providing programs that support our youth in developing essential life skills and overcoming barriers, so that they may develop to their full potential. Literacy rates among our youth are low, report cards consistently state students "need to read more" and it presented a barrier for all subjects.
In partnership with Michelle Morrison, owner/principal of Harbourview Montessori School and her staff we embarked on a pilot project to improve our youth’s literacy skills. This program supports new and struggling readers, by providing members with one on one reading support using the Orton-Gillingham Approach to reading. This is a phonics-based program that uses a multi-modal approach to reading. It is program is offered twice a week by trained tutors as part of our after-school program to help strengthen our community.
Over the past year we have seen such positive results that we have expanded this program to include more members of our club. In December we did a call out for volunteers, and received many responses. Our ten volunteers and a staff member attended four training sessions at Harbourview Montessori.
Michelle Morrison provided basic training to begin tutoring youth in an engaging series of workshops. A few of the pilot project participants attended a workshop, so that the volunteers could practice their new skills with some of the youth from the program.
The successful growth of this program is a result of private donations, a strong relationship with our local schools (WPM & Harbourside) and the dedication of community volunteers like Michelle and our tutors. Together we can support our youth in developing essential life skills and overcoming barriers, so that they may develop to their full potential.