Nonprofits Making a Difference in North Carolina

Nonprofits provide 1 out of 10 jobs in North Carolina by employing more than 400,000 people. Only the retail trade, manufacturing, and accommodation and food services industries are larger than the nonprofit sector.  Nonprofit employees’ incomes are put back into the economy in the form of income, sales and property taxes, and homes and consumer goods.


Add the services provided by the approximately 2.5 million people who volunteer in NC nonprofits, and the impact is truly profound. From arts to education and more, the needed and valuable services provided by workers in the nonprofit sector enhance the fabric of NC communities.

Visit the N.C. Center for Nonprofits website to download their first ever comprehensive report about the economic impact of 501(c)(3) nonprofits in our state.

Celebrate International Literacy Day

IntlLitDay logo
International Literacy Day is September 8

We celebrate and support literacy every day because we are, after all, Craven Literacy Council. Today, September 8, 2015, is International Literacy Day–a day when the whole world takes special note of the importance of literacy.

UNESCO proclaimed International Literacy Day on November 17, 1965 to highlight the importance of literacy to individuals, communities and societies. Strong skills in reading, writing,  computing and using technology are the prerequisite for individuals to learn a broader set of knowledge, attitudes and values necessary for living productive lives in today’s communities.

Encourage an adult who does  not read well to come see us for free, confidential help. Talk to us about tutoring opportunities. Get involved and help us stamp out low literacy., 252-637-8079, 2507 Neuse Blvd, New Bern NC


Community Foundation Supports Adult Literacy

Craven Literacy Council joined 22 other local nonprofits on Monday, August 24, to accept a grant from the Craven County Community Foundation. An affiliate of the N.C. Community Foundation, the Craven County Community Foundation, awarded grants totaling $115,630 this year.

A proud recipient of grants from the foundation for a number of years, Craven Literacy Council will use the grant to support our adult literacy programs.

Read more in the New Bern Sun Journal here.

Single Mom Improves Literacy for Better Job

picture of student and tutor
Tutor Mary Helen Boone (right) celebrates with her student

When a young single mother reached out to Craven Literacy Council to help improve her reading and writing skills as a way to get a good paying job, she had no idea how far she would go. Adult learner Denise Ellis and her tutor, Mary Helen Boone, have accomplished so much together since December 2008.

Denise faced many challenges during those years. Family issues, unemployment, an auto accident that left her with recurring bouts of pain, and finally, loss of her home to Hurricane Irene. She had to move her children from one temporary location to another over the past few years. (Fortunately, with the help of Mary Helen and her husband, Denise was finally able to find a permanent home for her family this year.)

With all these challenges, it would have been so easy to stop studying, but not Denise. Discovering through her daughters that she had a passion for working with young children, she enrolled at Pamlico Community College to work toward a certificate in Early Childhood Education. As a work-study student at PCC, she is able to work with the Smart Start Program, a pre-school educational program, which made her even more certain that she wants to help educate children. Denise has already completed two years of study at PCC and earned all B’s last semester! Now she and Mary Helen are working on the financial aid package to enable her to continue her studies.

We’ve all heard the saying, “When the going gets tough, the tough get going.” That certainly describes the Denise/Mary Helen team, and we couldn’t be prouder to share their story.

US Citizenship for CLC Student

photo of tutor and student
Tutor with new US citizen Gloria Aranda

Gloria Aranda was all smiles after becoming a naturalized citizen during a ceremony in Durham this month. Since arriving from Colombia in 2004, she has worked hard to master the English language to be able to help her daughter do well in school.

Gloria came to Craven Literacy Council two years ago, and we paired her with a volunteer tutor. The duo has been studying together ever since. In that time Gloria has steadily improved her English proficiency. When she decided to work toward achieving citizenship status both she and her tutor studied U.S. history and civics together. This summer the hard work paid off with Gloria’s earning of US citizenship.

Read more of Gloria’s story here in the New Bern SunJournal.

Support CLC With Your Back to School Shopping

It’s easy to support Craven Literacy Council when you are doing your back to school shopping. Many merchants donate a portion of their sales to nonprofits. All you have to do is indicate CLC as your preferred nonprofit. Here are three quick ways to do just that.

Harris Teeter TIELink your Harris Teeter VIC card to Craven Literacy Council (#3289) for Together In Education (TIE). By  shopping for HT brands, a percentage of your purchase is donated to the Literacy Council.

Thanks to everyone who has linked their VIC card to Craven Literacy Council, we just received a check for $183.20.  Each August be sure  to relink your VIC card to CLC’s number (3289) by visiting

Click here when you shop at Amazon. Select Craven Literacy Council as your nonprofit, and we’ll get a nominal portion of your purchase price.

logo_staplesWhen checking out at Staples, give them our telephone number (252-637-8079) so we can get the ‘rewards’ from your purchases.

Welcome, New Tutors

group photo of July 2015 new tutor training class
Welcome New Tutors!

Craven Literacy Council has a fabulous new group of volunteer tutors in the process of being matched with a student. We are excited and delighted to have them on board.

These individuals have completed our 15-hour New Tutor Training workshop and are now ProLiteracy Certified Volunteer tutors. They each will be paired with a student whose literacy needs meet their tutoring skills and availability.

Two New Grants for CLC

Like most nonprofits, Craven Literacy Council relies on a mix of private gifts and corporate and foundation grants. These grants vary in size, but all are vital to us achieving our mission of helping adults learn to read, write, compute and use technology effectively in their every day lives.

This year CLC received 2 new grants. christchurchnbThe Christ Episcopal Church Women gave a $500 grant for the purchase of a laminator and binding machine. We will use this equipment to develop more professional and easy to use instructional materials.

Our other new grant is from Bank of America in the amount of $2,500.

ED Donna Marshall receives $2,500 check
ED Donna Marshall receives $2,500 check

We will use this money to purchase software and additional laptops for our students’ use. We are thrilled that Bank of America is funding CLC’s efforts in our community and look forward to collaborating with Bank of America on Financial Literacy classes for our students.

As another grant season comes to a close, our Executive Director here at Craven Literacy Council can give a big sigh of relief. The time she spent at her computer this spring writing grants to the wonderful companies who support adult literacy in the US has been rewarded.

Thank you to all our supporters!

Fun & Funds at Trivia Night

table scene
Coming up with the right answer

Our inaugural Trivia Night and Silent Auction fundraiser held on June 12 was a rollicking success. Guests enjoyed social time and light snacks as they assembled their teams. Then after brief introductions, the games began with emcee Nelson McDaniel asking the questions for round 1 of 4.

During the break after each round, guests had a chance to refresh their drinks, bid on silent auction items and visit with friends. Then it was back to the tables to hear the answers, find out who won and check out cumulative team scores on the interactive scoreboard.

Competition was intense, but in the end the Quizzly Bears had one more point to earn their first place medals and take home the trophy.

winning team
Quizzly Bears: (Front row) Brandon Christian, Mary Kay Furimsky, Karen Segal. (Back row) Dan Furimsky, Cassie Segal, Jon Segal.

The night got even better for Craven Literacy when team captain Jon Segal announced that they were donating their $500 prize to the council.

Thanks to all who helped raise $8,000 to improve adult literacy in our community.