Literacy Volunteers of Camden County


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Frank's Story

Frank, a 29 year-old construction worker, couldn't read well enough to pass an on-the-job test. He was fired.

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Maria's Story

Maria, a young mother of three, doesn't have the reading skills to help her school-age child with homework or read a note from her child's teacher.

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  • In 2003, 17% of New Jersey’s population lacked basic prose literacy skills (8th grade reading level) compared to 14.7% nationally, according to the U S Dept of Education.
  • 40%-60% of students in New Jersey’s urban school districts drop out of school with a reading level below 9th grade.

  • One million New Jersey residents over age 25 do not hold a high school diploma.

  • In the City of Camden, 406 teens dropped out of school in the 2005-2006 academic year, among the highest of any school district in New Jersey. 

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Wouldn’t it be nice to put a smile on someone's face?  How much nicer would it be if all you had to do to make this come true was to go shopping for yourself? Here’s how:

  • Go to and log onto your existing Amazon account or create a new one.
  • Type in Literacy Now Inc.  Then select Literacy Now Inc. from the dropdown menu.  This selection will stay each time you shop and does not have to be selected again.
  • Whenever you want to buy something from Amazon, log onto, make your purchase and Literacy Now will receive a donation from Amazon based on your purchase.
  • Important: This will not affect your existing account settings, i.e. password, Prime membership, etc.
  • Try it.  Let us know how it goes.  Pass it on to your friends and relatives.

Literacy Now Inc. is the fundraising wing of Literacy Volunteers of Camden County.  Our volunteers offer free tutoring to local adults to improve their reading, math and/or conversational English skills. 



Young adults who lack reading and writing proficiency likely will be relegated to the ranks of unskilled workers in a world where literacy is an absolute precondition for success. The consequences for the individual and the costs to the nation are staggering in terms of lost wages and earnings over a lifetime.

Estimates for dropouts, who typically have low literacy skills, are on the order of about $335 billion per year. For those you gain entry into the workplace, private industry spends an estimated $3.1 billion annually to bolster the literacy skills of entry-level workers.

  What We Do | Location | People Involved | Funding | Supervision

What we do: Literacy Volunteers of Camden County helps adults in Camden County at the lowest levels of literacy.    We work with immigrants who need help understanding and speaking English and we work with people who need help with elementary level reading and math skills.  We assist these learners by recruiting and training volunteer tutors to teach using a flexible, learner-centered approach.

Tutors and students meet for two hours a week in public places, working together toward goals set by the student.  Students come from many referral sources including the local libraries, word-of-mouth from friends or community groups, social service agencies, other literacy organizations and the Camden County One-Stop Unemployment/Career Center.   Some of the countries represented by our students include: Afghanistan, Argentina, Bangladesh, Brazil, China, Columbia, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, El Salvador, Guatemala, Haiti, Honduras, India, Iran, Japan, Liberia, Mexico, Nepal, Nicaragua, Pakistan, Paraguay, South Korea, Taiwan, Thailand, Turkey, Venezuela, Vietnam.

Established in 1982, LVCC is a library-based non-profit organization and member of ProLiteracy, a national adult education organization. 

Where we are located: Our organization’s main office is in the Camden County Vogelson Library, 203 Laurel Road in Voorhees.  We also have a satellite office in the One-Stop, 2600 Mt Ephraim Avenue, Suite 105 in Camden. Tutors and students meet, at their convenience, in public places throughout Camden County.

How many people are involved: Last year our organization had over 120 volunteer tutors who spent approximately 2,700 hours tutoring and 1,300 hours preparing for and traveling to tutoring sessions.  Throughout the year, we served 81 Basic Literacy students and 76 ESL students, all of whom had at least twelve hours of tutoring.

As a result of our tutoring, some of our clients obtained jobs, received job promotions or enrolled in vocational training.  Several of our ESL clients became citizens and many more improved their employability skills and increased their involvement in community activities.

Where we get our funding: The majority of our funding comes from a Consolidated Adult Basic Skills and Integrated English Literacy and Civics Education Grant funded under the Workforce Investment Act of 1998, Title II, overseen by the New Jersey Department of Labor and Workforce Development.   In conjunction with the Camden County Library System, LVCC receives a Human Services Grant from the Camden County Community Planning and Advocacy Council.  Additional funding comes from our State organization, Literacy Volunteers of New Jersey, and donations from our “friends” organization, Literacy Now.

LVCC is also a member-in-good-standing of Literacy Volunteers of New Jersey which represents 19 affiliates throughout New Jersey.  LVNJ provides the tutor trainers and tutor training manuals used to prepare new tutors.

Who supervises LVCC: In addition to the staff, LVCC has an Advisory Board.  Current members of this Board are:

Maria Efstratiades, President
Linda Hart
Howard Stein
Cheryl Oribabor
Mark Sacks
Linda Devlin, Liaison to Camden County Library
Shyamoli De, Liaison to Literacy Volunteers of Camden County
Swapna Ghosh
Marjorie Kent Levine

 LVCC reports to the Camden County Library Director and its Board of Commissioners.