People & Stories / Gente y Cuentos is dedicated to opening doors to literature for new audiences. Through oral readings and rigorous discussions of enduring short stories, we invite underserved participants to fresh understandings of themselves, of others, and of the world.
People & Stories / Gente y Cuentos programs create an enjoyable and enriching experience with literature for those who have limited ability, opportunity or motivation to read independently.
Most of our participants are reading at or below a fifth grade level, have not completed high school, are economically disadvantaged, and are often in difficult circumstances. Participants are recruited within community centers and social service organizations that serve minority, ethnic, elderly, or disadvantaged populations.
People & Stories / Gente y Cuentos enters non-traditional "classrooms" and sparks a love of reading and learning in those who, in many cases, have not succeeded in school. Those who previously thought that a public, formal, educational discussion would be intimidating are surprised by the relaxed, supportive, non-threatening atmosphere created by our method for conducting the dialogues. Therefore, the reading and discussion of complex texts becomes a pleasurable experience.
In total, our program serves about 1,000 individuals each year through approximately 35 partnering organizations. Grants from foundations and federal and state government agencies, as well as contributions from individuals, support our partnerships with community organizations to enhance wrap-around services for individuals in transition.
Of the 400+ adult learners that were surveyed in 2018:
86% reported wanting to read MORE after our program.
84% are more confident in their reading ability.
92% agreed that they learned more about themselves, others, and the world.
95% were glad that they participated.
Gary was extremely helpful and attentive to our organization's specific needs. His encouraging attitude coupled with his obvious expertise made for a very productive call. I thoroughly enjoyed the experience. Since this endeavor is brand new to me, I was a bit nervous that some of the concepts would soar over my head. Gary's advice was very straight forward and easy to digest and I learned a lot more than anticipated. I'd highly recommend Gary if you need help conceptualizing your idea, or if you want to take a look at how your project may impact your organization's overall impact. Thank you Gary, and Catchafire!! This was wonderful.
People & Stories has some exciting opportunities ahead. It was a great pleasure to talk about these with Cheyenne and hopefully support their success.