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Sep 4, 2013 |
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[caption id="attachment_8145" align="alignleft" width="300"]Henry and son Henry and son[/caption] Meet Henry, a Native American enrolled member of the Navajo Nation. He and his wife, Darlene, have a son, Adam, who is in first grade. Henry was honorably discharged from the United States Army Operation Iraqi Freedom. Henry’s mission since Adam’s birth has been to be a good father and a role model for Adam. To fulfill this mission, Henry needed guidance on how to help Adam learn and grow, even on everyday tasks such as getting Adam ready for school in the mornings. With his wife’s encouragement, Henry and Adam enrolled in the National Center for Family Literacy’s Family and Child Education Program (FACE) in Ft. Wingate, New Mexico. When they began attending the program in 2008, Henry was shy and kept to himself. Throughout his five years with the FACE program, Henry has developed confidence and now he serves as a role model among his classmates, helping his teachers and assisting other parents. Henry and Adam have become a powerful learning team. They practice the alphabet and sounding out words, counting, and math problems. The pair has learned together about healthy eating and exercise. Henry spends time helping Adam during school; he’s become such a familiar figure in the class, that many of Adam’s classmates gather around Henry during reading time. Henry always wanted to go back to college but when Adam was born, he knew he needed to provide for his family. So he put college on hold and made it a priority to get Adam prepared for success in school. Now that Adam is in first grade, Henry’s college dream is being realized. He is currently enrolled in college, taking classes online for early childhood education. Henry is a strong advocate for the FACE program. In fact, he credits the program as his inspiration for wanting to become a kindergarten teacher. Being around the children in the FACE program showed him how he can profoundly impact the lives of others. “Not only did the program strengthen the bond between me and my son, it also has got [Adam] wanting to go to school and for me that means a lot,” Henry says. “Every year the FACE program has given me the opportunity and blessings to achieve new goals for myself and family, where ‘growth’ is a focus.” A winner of the FACE parent essay contest, he has spoken at numerous engagements including FACE Nationals, the University of New Mexico, Futures for Families, and different audiences within the Navajo Nation. Do you know someone who has benefited from family literacy? Please share your success story by emailing news {at} or by commenting below.


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NCFL Partners

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Toyota, one of the nation's most successful corporations, began a partnership with NCFL in 1991. In addition to a commitment of more than $50 million, Toyota has also contributed a wealth of in-kind support — including advertising, planning and management expertise — to form one of the most progressive corporate/nonprofit partnerships in the nation.

Three major programs have been developed through the Toyota partnership based on the family literacy model of parents and children learning together. These models have influenced federal and state legislation, leveraged local dollars to support family literacy and led to successful programs being replicated across the country.

Read more about Toyota's commitment to communities

William R. Kenan, Jr. Charitable Trust

NCFL received its very first donation in 1989 from the William R. Kenan, Jr. Charitable Trust to promote and implement family literacy programming, first in Kentucky and North Carolina and later nationwide. The Kenan Family Literacy Model in part laid the groundwork for 30 years of subsequent family literacy and family learning programming developed by NCFL.

Kenan has continued to support NCFL’s place-based family literacy programs since our inception. Most recently, it has invested in our organization’s Sharon Darling Innovation Fund, which will launch emerging ideas and programmatic evolutions in the multigenerational learning space.

Learn more about the William R. Kenan, Jr. Charitable Trust

Dollar General Literacy Foundation

The Dollar General Literacy Foundation began partnering with NCFL in 2006. A signature effort of this partnership is the National Literacy Directory, a resource that launched in 2010 and strives to guide potential students and volunteers to literacy services, community education programs, and testing centers in their communities.

The National Literacy Directory contains over 10,000 educational agencies located across the United States and has a dedicated toll-free number to help support those wanting to pursue educational opportunities in their communities.

Dollar General also provides support for development of NCFL’s innovative family learning resources centered on financial literacy and Parent and Child Together (PACT) Time®.

Learn more about the Dollar General Literacy Foundation

PNC Grow Up Great

PNC Grow Up Great believes deeply in the power of high-quality early childhood education and provides innovative opportunities that assist families, educators and community organizations to enhance children's learning and development.

PNC Grow Up Great has partnered with NCFL since 1994, most recently in Louisville, Kentucky, to support Say & Play with Words, our pre-Kindergarten vocabulary-building initiative.

NCFL's work is also featured on the PNC Grow Up Great Lesson Center website. The Lesson Center includes over 100 free, high-quality preschool lesson plans and research-based instructional techniques and strategies. All lesson plans contain Home/School Connections printouts, in English and Spanish, to help families extend and reinforce the learning at home.

Learn more about PNC Grow Up Great

U.S. Department of Education

Initiated through the U.S. Department of Education in 2018, the Statewide Family Engagement Centers (SFEC) program provides 12 grantees and 13 states with five-year, $5 million grants to promote and implement systemic evidenced-based family engagement strategies. NCFL was selected to lead SFECs in two states, Arizona and Nebraska, and is a primary partner for two other SFECs in Kentucky and Maryland/Pennsylvania. 

The SFECs work to support family engagement through state- and local-level agencies while providing both professional development to school districts and direct services to families related to children’s academic outcomes and overall well-being.

Learn more about the U.S. Department of Education

Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation

NCFL was named a recipient of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation’s "Voices for Economic Opportunity Grand Challenge," which seeks to elevate diverse voices in order to broaden the conversation about the issues inhibiting economic mobility and generate deeper awareness along with actionable understanding. NCFL will develop and launch a podcast series that will highlight the remarkable stories of low-income, diverse families across the U.S. who have improved their communities through Family Service Learning.

Foundation Website