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Article posted: 10/17/2013 11:11 AM

Volunteers sought to tutor incarcerated young men

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Submitted by Literacy Volunteers of Illinois

Literacy Volunteers of Illinois is seeking men and women who are compassionate, flexible, and nonjudgmental to become volunteer tutors for incarcerated youth at the Illinois Youth Center in St. Charles.

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The tutoring program, called "Jump Start," is offering an information session from 1:30 p.m. to 2:30 p.m. Monday, Oct. 21 at the Unitarian Universalist Society of Geneva, 110 S. Second St. Teaching experience is not required, as 12 hours of tutor training are provided to volunteers free. Most tutors volunteer between one and two hours a week, and tutoring is done one-on-one in a safe and supervised environment. Becoming a volunteer tutor can be a lengthy process, as an extensive background check is required, but volunteers in the program find the work very rewarding.

"Youth who have the advantage of working with a tutor are more likely to achieve their GED or high school diploma and are less likely to re-enter the system," said Melissa Auer, coordinator of the Jump Start program.

Located on Route 38 west of St. Charles, the facility hosts approximately 300 young men involved in the juvenile justice system. While ages range from 14 to 20, most are between 16 and 18 years old. Educational ability among the youth varies widely, with some youth struggling to learn basic reading and math skills and others working toward high school diplomas or GEDs.

For information or to reserve a spot in the class, contact LVI through their website, www.lvillinois.org, or by calling (312) 857-1582.

This project is made possible by a grant awarded by the Illinois State Library, a division of the office of Secretary of State, using state funds designated for literacy.

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