Best of Stories that Soar! was a BLAST!

Best of Stories that Soar! was a BLAST!
There is only one way to celebrate a record-breaking and award-winning Stories that Soar! season, and that is with Best of Stories that Soar!
On May 15th, over 600 people joined Literacy Connects to honor young authors and the talented Stories that Soar! acting ensemble at the Berger Performing Arts Center for two shows highlighting the most innovative, outrageous and insightful stories of the 2015-2016 season. During the mid-show reception, the professional actors along with the STS! High actors from Desert View High and Rincon/University High engaged families with interactive entertainment, dancing and zany antics.
Before each show, Artistic Director Sharon O’Brien asked audience members to explore the deeper meanings presented in each story. Be it a story of a father and son connecting through low rider culture, a teen missing out on opportunity due to today’s technological distractions, or envisioning a perfect day with friends, each story has a unique genesis, often rooted in something personally or universally relevant.
While the Magic Box works up its appetite for the 2016-2017 season, we invite you to stay connected through our Literacy Connects andStories that Soar! Facebook pages. For some summer fun, you can watch Best of Stories that Soar! videos on our STS! Youtube channel, and as always we encourage everyone to keep writing, reading and using your imagination! Have a great summer!
Literacy Connects Receives 3-Year Grant from the Women’s Foundation of Southern Arizona
Literacy Connects was one of two grantees to receive the Equity & Opportunity Fund grant from the Women’s Foundation of Southern Arizona this year. The grant is intended to expand or enhance services that build the long-term economic security and financial independence of low-income, women-headed families.
The grant will be used to develop and implement the WOMEN RISE Training and Internship program for English language learners who want to increase their job-readiness, in order to work or start a small business in the United States. Two cohorts of fifteen immigrant and refugee women will participate in the program each year. Program components include a 10-week Job Readiness class, networking opportunities, and an internship to increase employability and work-related experience.
For more information about this program, contact Jennifer Stanowski, Director of our English Language Acquisition for Adults (ELAA) program at (520) 882-8006 or email:
Open House Celebration Recap
Over 150 people attended our Open House and Volunteer Recognition Event on Friday, April 29th, including volunteers, supporters, students and elected officials. The program included a message from Mayor Jonathan Rothschild and presentation of a proclamation by Pima County Supervisor Richard Elias to the Thomas R. Brown Family Foundation as a thank you for the funds to renovate several additional classrooms!
The event was a celebration of two wonderful gifts: our newly renovated classrooms and the unveiling of our completely transformed courtyard (thanks to Santa Rita Landscaping). The event also recognized the amazing tutors, coaches, pediatricians, students and office volunteers that make our programs possible.

Literacy Connects’ staff member Nick Granum provided musical entertainment for guests in the courtyard; a video slideshow of program highlights played in the tutoring center and delicious food was served as guests gathered to visit. One of the new classrooms showcased all of our programs with posters and displays, and amazing desserts were served to satisfy any sweet tooth!

As Literacy Connects grows and we move into our second year in our home located at 200 East Yavapai Road, we are filled with excitement at the opportunities and connections that will continue to be made as we expand in our space.
Thank you to all who joined us! If you have not had a chance to see all the changes, come on by!


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Dynamic Duo: Anita and Mona!
Meeting these two lovely individuals, Mona Baker (tutor) and Anita Mattison (student), was like meeting those couples who begin and end each other’s sentences. One of the first things Anita said though was, “Mona is there to help me, to push me, but it’s me doing it.” (read more)
Field Trip to the Arizona House of Representatives 
To culminate the Social Studies lessons on American government, one of our classes took a field trip to the Arizona House of Representatives that resulted in a wonderful learning experience, as well as a brush with a couple of Arizona celebrities, Representative Dr. Randy Friese and Secretary of State Michele Reagan! (read more)
Employment Opportunity: Basic Literacy Program Coordinator (Reading Seed)
Reading Seed recruits and trains volunteer reading coaches from the community to assist children reading below grade level in kindergarten through fifth grade. The Program Coordinator is responsible for the matching and scheduling of volunteers and students in schools throughout Pima County. Ongoing volunteer support is critical and excellent customer service, communication skills and attention to detail are a must. To find out more, visit our website: The application deadline for this full-time, exempt position is Friday, June 3, 2016.
Seeking Amazing AmeriCorps Volunteers

Interested in making a difference in the life of a child or adult? Work with one of our great programs!

Visit our website for details on these four AmeriCorps positions:
Book Review Corner
Click here or on the image to read the review!
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