Sarah worked at a bakery, but she couldn’t read the recipes. She struggled to multiply the recipes when necessary. She could not write notes. She had to ask lots of questions and relied on other staff, to help her read the recipes and complete the necessary math.
This bakery job was important. Sarah and her husband John had recently moved to Canada. They had not had the opportunity to learn to read and write and struggled with their math skills. They were reliant on this job for their new life. Sarah reports, “It was very hard to make your living and manage without being able to read.”
Through a community support centre, Sarah discovered TLG. Nervous, uncertain, Sarah came for an assessment. Sarah says, “It was because of her (my tutor) that our life changed.” With her tutor’s patient support, Sarah improved her skills. Eventually she learned to read every recipe at work and was able to adjust the quantities to make different sized batches. Her confidence grew and, recognised by her employer, she became a supervisor, writing lists and tasks for 10 employees. People were now coming to her for help. When somebody made a mistake with a recipe her boss would bring the problem to her. Sara would hunt through the recipe book to try to find a recipe that could use those ingredients if she adjusted the quantities, saving the bakery the costly ingredients. She even became the trainer for new people, something she found she had a gift for.
More than this, Sarah learned to love reading. Her tutor would give her books to read. Suddenly one day she realized she was actually understanding what she was reading and was getting something out of the book! She used to think people who read for fun were just lazy. Until one day when she was reading “just one more page” and found she couldn’t put the book down for two hours – even though there was so much work to do!
“Without your help, I would not be where I am right now, and I am very proud of myself.” We are proud of Sarah too.