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Zaman’s literacy program receives $27,000 in WIOA funding

Zaman International has received two Workforce Innovation Opportunity Act (WIOA) grants totaling $27,000 to make curricular and capacity improvements to its Literacy Program.

Under WIOA, the federal government provides funding to organizations that help individuals access employment, education, training, and support services to succeed in the labor market and to match employers with the skilled workers they need to compete in the global economy. It has been a significant source of support for Zaman’s Literacy Program for the 2017-18 and 2018-19 academic years, providing $154,000 to the organization on the strength of its success helping women acquire English language proficiency as well as civics instruction.

The two most recent grants – which bring Zaman’s total WIOA funding to date to $181,00 – include $20,000 for an instructional initiative and $7,000 for capacity improvement. Specifically, the $7,000 will be used to purchase a commercial copier that is quicker and more efficient than existing equipment – achieving cost savings with respect to staff time, toner, and paper – and that can support the program’s marketing and enrollment activities.

The $20,000 grant will be used to solidify the program’s English as a Second Language (ESL) and Vocational English as a Second Language (VESL) curricula to make it easier for tutors to deliver. Among other things, this will include the refinement of multi-level English acquisition lesson plans and assessments that cover reading, writing and listening, the development of instructional packets covering national holidays, civics, and workforce preparation activities, and the streamlining of the Laubach and Burlington English curricula used by tutors.

Literacy Program Director Gigi Salka said the WIOA funding is a strong endorsement of the program’s value to Metro Detroit.

“WIOA funding has helped Zaman’s literacy program by providing us the resources needed to continue to grow and strengthen our program, which has put us on the forefront of the most up-to-date initiatives at the state and federal level regarding workforce development,” Salka said.