Fran Wagner

Fran Wagner

Program needs literacy champions

One to One Children’s Literacy Program in Vernon has put the call out for volunteers

While it’s the children who benefit the most from one to one reading, tutors like Fran Wagner will argue they get just as much out of watching them excel.

“We’re just so invested in them,” said Wagner, who been volunteering with the One to One Children’s Literacy Program in Vernon for 19 years.

“You take great pride in them.”

Wagner works with kids at Alexis Park Elementary, which is just one of the 14 schools the program runs in.

“I just love kids and I love literature,” said Wagner of why she has stuck with the program for so long.

While the gift of reading that she shares with children is invaluable, she too benefits from the program.

“You get more out of it than you give.”

And between the children she assists, the school staff and the other volunteer tutors at the school, the program is like a second family to Wagner.

Unfortunately the need for additional volunteers continues, in each of the  schools.

“We will need volunteers at all 14 of our schools and we also need French speaking tutors for our French immersion program at Beairsto school,” said Bonnie Hutton, district co-ordinator for the program.

“We always have a need.”

Anyone interested in helping kids, and reaping the benefits of such, can take part in one of two free training sessions taking place Jan. 20 and 26. Either of the three-hour sessions, along with a criminal record check, will provide those interested the skills needed to help children overcome their reading obstacles.

Once trained, tutors will spend an hour-and-a-half a week in a school.

Those interested can contact Bonnie Hutton at 250-549-2216 or