What We Do
Adult Learning was initially and continues to be one of the CORE program areas. Adults are given the opportunity to gain essential skills: reading, writing, document use, numeracy, computer use, thinking and oral communication. Skills gained in Adult Learning allow learners to fully participate in society, have better success at work, and continue further studies.
- English Second Language and English Language Learning
- Conversational French
- Basic Computer Skills
- Preparation for Citizenship, English Language Competency
Community Literacy Program
Various programs and projects are provided to get books into homes. The target audience is children; but seniors and others benefit from getting free books too. Donated books are accepted from the public and distributed on Community Bookshelves. Reusing books means less waste that goes into landfills.
- Community Bookshelves – 23 locations through out the community with new and used books can be taken for free.
- Welcome Baby – Parents of newborns are given a gift pack of donated items that includes a book from Community Learning.
- Immunization Clinics – Children are allowed to select a book of their choice after the nurse has given the immunization needle.
- Community Events – books are provided at community events, to schools, day cares, and others upon request.
Social Support Services
Our supportive staff and volunteers work with individuals facing social and economic barriers that are hindering the achieving of his or her potential.
- Providing access to, and assistance with, basic technology
- Providing assistance to individuals, and supporting their independence and advocacy skills
- Providing knowledgeable referrals for services and supports within the community, such as career counselling/employment services, childcare, transportation, and other government programs and agencies.
- Facilitate the development of personal and interpersonal skills including:
- Decision-making and problem solving
- Creative and critical thinking
- Communication and interpersonal skills
- Self-awareness and empathy
- Coping with emotions and stress
- Intercultural competencies
Senior Support Services
Community Learning staff and volunteers work closely with seniors to enhance their quality of life by providing programs and services that address social needs. The New Horizon Senior Steering Committee is made up of seniors from diverse cultural backgrounds. The committee members work collaboratively with others from multiple organizations and agencies to plan, host, and evaluate programs and projects . Seniors from all cultures and backgrounds share their skills and experiences in a variety of learning and social opportunities. Inter-generational and intercultural engagement is valuable to seniors and the community.
- Living Histories
- Connecting the Community Through Food
- The Food Security Project
- Senior Connect
Food Security Services
Everyone needs to eat, yet many in our community have inadequate or insecure access to food because of personal circumstances, scarce financial resources and rising food and other household costs. We have addressed food security from two perspectives, the growing of food and the distribution of edible food from grocery stores and restaurants that was going to the landfill.
Growing and Processing Food
Individuals and families are coming to Community Learning and expressing concerns about their lack of knowledge on how to grow their own food. We leveraged funds from various sources and this year:
- distributed Edible Garden kits (seeds, instructions and children’s gardening books) to 200 families,
- provided 50 families with raised Barrel gardens made recycled plastic barrels and pallets,
- helped 10 senior couples with building and planting strawberry garden plots
- developed and will deliver workshops teaching families and individuals how to preserve food they grow for eating later.
Stone Soup Food Centre
The Sone Soup Food Centre diverts food waste from the landfill and supports organizations that serve the marginalized, isolated and senior populations by providing them with food. It tackles the issues of food security, skill development, social isolation and environmental impact.
A Second Harvest of food from the local grocery stores and restaurants collects food that would otherwise be sent to the landfill.
After processing, food will be distributed to low income individuals and families through the food bank, Out of Elements homeless shelter, churches and mosque, seniors’ societies, schools and to volunteers working at the centre.
Food that is not fit for human consumption is converted into soil in Portage College’s bio-digester. Food waste not only costs money, but also has a negative impact on the environment as it typically ends up in landfills.
The food centre also provides a space that offers classes and workshops for the community as a whole to explore culinary classes, cultural cooking, and food preservation.
Community Learning is well positioned to explore and develop ways to cultivate a sustainable food system that elevates social, environmental and economic equity for all community members in Lac La Biche County.