It is very common to face literacy challenges. 1 in 4 adults in Waterloo Region fall in the lowest levels of literacy and most adults with literacy challenges use English as a first language.

Low levels of literacy can be a major barrier to finding and keeping a job and earning promotions within a business or organization. Facing literacy challenges is very common. Seeking assistance is not.

We have worked with many job-searchers who have identified literacy challenges, sought assistance within the community, and moved on to meet their job goal due to their improved skills and confidence. We encourage you to seek assistance with literacy and invite you to chat with us about how you can get support.

What is Literacy?

Literacy isn’t only reading and writing. Literacy is about understanding and using the information you encounter each day.

Literacy in Ontario covers five skill areas:

  • Reading
  • Writing
  • Math
  • Communications – Speaking and Listening
  • Self-direction and self-management (problem solving and organization)

Literacy and Basic Skills (LBS) Support

There are a number of agencies that provide literacy and basic skills support but there are many similarities between them. LBS agencies in Ontario provide 5 key services for adult students:

  • Information and referral
  • Assessment
  • Creating a Training Plan
  • Training/Instruction
  • Evaluation and Follow-up

Students are assessed based on a 5-Level scale for each of the 5 skill areas. A student’s training plan is constructed individually, based on their own long-term goals. This way, the areas of greatest focus in your daily life can be the areas of greatest focus in your LBS training.

Literacy Support in Waterloo Region

Project READ is an umbrella organization that works to support, coordinate and improve the literacy and basic skills delivery in Waterloo and Wellington Regions. There are a number of LBS agencies in Waterloo Region, including:

  • Conestoga College (Cambridge and Waterloo)
  • The Literacy Group of Waterloo Region (Cambridge and Kitchener)
  • St. Louis Adult Learning Centre (Cambridge and Kitchener)
  • Waterloo Region District School Board (Cambridge and Waterloo)


Adult literacy and basic skills students come from all ages and backgrounds. The similarity is the desire to improve literacy skills to move towards their own personal goal. We invite you to chat with us if you have any questions or concerns about your literacy level or seeking support with literacy and basic skills.

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