Language is power.

When you give an adult the gift of learning language, that power ripples through the community—uplifting the individual, energizing families, igniting the spirit of a neighborhood.

That’s what we do at Literacy DuPage, and we want you to join us. Become a tutor, or share your time with our cause in some other way. It’s sure to be one of the most rewarding endeavors of your life.

You’re just three steps from a life-changing volunteer opportunity.

Step 1. Register for volunteer orientation, where you’ll learn more about Literacy DuPage and receive a training registration packet. We hold these 90-minute sessions regularly at locations throughout DuPage County. Here’s a schedule of upcoming orientation sessions:

Elmhurst Public Library
125 South Prospect Avenue, Elmhurst
Monday, June 26, 9:30 AM – 11:00 AM

Westmont Public Library
428 North Cass Avenue, Westmont
Thursday, July 6, 6:30 PM – 8:00 PM

Fountaindale Public Library
300 West Briarcliff Road, Bolingbrook
Saturday, July 29, 9:30 AM – 11:00 AM

DuPage Unitarian Universalist Church
1828 Old Naperville Road, Naperville
August 14, 9:30 AM – 11:00 AM

Step 2. Reserve your spot in our training program by completing and returning your registration packet (including background check form), along with $40 to help defray the cost of training materials. We conduct training regularly and throughout the county, so you can choose the training series that’s most convenient for you. The full, 18-hour training program is a time commitment, but this instruction will give you all the tools and information you need to support a learner. You’ll be in a cohort of other beginning tutors—just like you.

Step 3. Meet your adult learner. Part-way through your training experience, you’ll be matched with a learner, so you can start making a difference right away.

Beyond tutoring, here are other ways you can get involved with Literacy DuPage:

  • Volunteer in our office
  • Provide IT/computer support
  • Help with special events
  • Create learner success stories to share
  • Take photos of Literacy DuPage in action
  • Donate design, printing, and other services
  • Invite us to meet with your company, organization, club, or place of worship
  • Secure sponsorships for our work
  • Invite individuals to donate
  • Recruit other volunteers
  • Serve on a committee or join our board of directors

Interested? See something we’ve missed? Contact us to offer your time and talent to Literacy DuPage.

Commonly asked questions about tutoring:

A: Mostly, you need time and heart. You don’t need to speak a second language, and you don’t need experience as a teacher or tutor (though active and retired educators do make great tutors!). Specifically, here’s what it takes to be a Literacy DuPage tutor:

  • Be at least 21 years old with a high school diploma or equivalent.
  • Demonstrate the ability to speak, read, write and understand English well enough to communicate clearly at a native or near-native proficiency.
  • Be sensitive to the issues of literacy, the adult learner, and other cultures.
  • Be patient, dependable, friendly, optimistic, and open to learning new things.
  • Be interested in helping others, respectful of confidentiality, and able to communicate with compassion.
  • Have a sense of humor and enthusiasm for empowering adults through literacy.

A: No, you do not need to speak another language to tutor.

A: No, we will train you!

A: Tutoring does involve a time commitment. Here’s what you can expect, from orientation, to training, to ongoing tutoring:

  • 90 minutes for an initial volunteer orientation
  • 18 hours of tutor training spread over several days
  • Minimum of two ongoing tutor-education sessions (in-service workshops) each year
  • Minimum of six months of tutoring your adult learner for two hours per week

A: Here’s what we ask of Literacy DuPage tutors:

  • Meet with your learner regularly and punctually.
  • Prepare each lesson to meet your learner’s goals and needs.
  • Identify your learner’s special interests and integrate related material into lessons.
  • Set up an assessment meeting after every 35 hours of tutoring.
  • Submit hours online on a quarterly basis.
  • Contact program staff for support at any time. We look forward to assisting you!

A: The volunteer orientation is free. We ask for a $40 training fee to partially defray the cost of training materials.

Still Have Questions?

Ready to Begin?