Center for Literacy launches social media campaign to raise funds and awareness

Philadelphia’s leading community-based adult literacy provider, Center for Literacy (CFL), is trying to raise $15,000 through a social media campaign to support their programs and is asking for the public’s help.


On May 29, CFL is asking everyone who values the ability to read and write to speak out for literacy by joining the organization’s Facebook event page and posting a logo that states “I speak out for literacy” as their profile photo. Supporters are also encouraged to utilize Twitter and include the hashtag, “#SpeakOut2013.”

For every person who participates by joining the event page and changing their photo, the Firstrust Bank will award CFL $50. They will also give an additional $50 for every person that tweets using that specific hashtag.

Development fellow Mikecia Witherspoon who manages CFL’s social media accounts, said the campaign will be very beneficial in the support of the students in their program and will also shed light on a “hidden population”

“Just by having so many people participate and getting CFL’s name out there will be beneficial because they can possibly start to understand the situation about literacy in Philadelphia,” said Witherspoon.

“It will also open people’s minds and help them realize that there are a ton of people out here, 550,000 people in fact, that don’t have the skills to necessarily fill out job applications and read to their children.”

The Mt. Airy resident added that the completion of the grant challenge will enable the students to break free of barriers they face daily.  

Jamal Hayward, 42, of East Oak Lane can attest to those challenges. He was having difficulty helping his kids with their school assignments and performing his job with the City of Philadelphia. Even though he has a high school diploma, he felt that he was pushed through school because he was an athlete.

“I have a good job and in order to be a team player and be on the same level as everyone else, I decided it was time to do something about it,” said Hayward.

Hayward has been taking classes at CFL twice a week for nearly a year and has seen improvement in his math and science skills. His reading skills have also improved and now he can read newspaper articles for work and read to his kids. He describes his experience as “a blessing for me.”

The social media campaign is similar to a campaign conducted last year by volunteer Rachel Zestar-Postrk who was able to raise $1,503 for CFL.

The campaign will take place on the same day as CFL’s SpeakOut Celebration, an annual event that gives students, staff and volunteers the opportunity to share their perspective through original work that is published in a commemorative book. 12 students will also be asked to present speeches for the event, which will be held in the Montgomery Auditorium at the Main Branch of The Free Library of Philadelphia from 6 p.m. to 7:30 p.m on May 29.

For more information, visit the Center for Literacy Facebook page.

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