,A Message from CAAL's President
In this, our last issue for 2011, I want to thank you as a partner, friend, or subscriber for your continuing interest in our work. I also want to applaud the fine essential work you and colleagues across this nation do daily to meet the basic skills needs of millions of our fellow Americans.
I wish I didn't have to follow these two messages with one about financial need, but CAAL, like many other nonprofits, is struggling for funds to carry on into 2012 and beyond. I'm hoping you'll want to make a small donation to us as part of your holiday season giving.
You might wonder why you should choose CAAL for a year-end gift when there's such need all around us. We don't run programs. We don't award certificates. We don't interact every day with students or labor in the front-line community trenches where students are served. But what we do do creates a stronger foundation and funding for your work. You can see the results of our national policy and research program at the federal, state, and community levels, in all sorts of ways -- legislation and policy, more effective services, and bringing adult education and workforce skills groups together in new, more productive ways. Adult learners at all skills levels benefit from what we do.
Much of our effort these days grows out of CAAL's first-ever, two-year National Commission on Adult Literacy (enabled by the vision and funding of Dollar General Corporation). Its Reach Higher, America report is still downloaded from our website in huge numbers every month. It has generated much of the new thinking, action, and positive energy needed to move our field forward. We're especially proud that it has motivated so much future planning in the states. It remains a guidepost for business leaders, and for policymakers and educators. Sam Halperin, a commissioner and founder of the American Youth Policy Forum, describes CAAL's impact this way: "That CAAL could cause the Commission to be formed in the first place, and then steer 25 plus leadership organizations into supporting a bold report is a testament to CAAL's effectiveness....Even more impressive (and unlike most other commission reports), CAAL keeps the Commission's report alive by continuing to educate and advocate for its realistic recommendations."
We plan to build on our achievements in 2012. If you believe CAAL's nonpartisan voice is important and should continue, please consider a contribution at this time -- whether large or small, your help will make a big difference.
Everyone at CAAL -- Forrest Chisman, Jim Parker, Garrett Murphy, Gene Sofer, Bess Heitner, Paula Jarowski, and our prestigious roster of board members -- joins me in wishing all of you the happiest of holidays and a great New Year.
Or mail your check to CAAL at the address shown at the bottom of this E-News issue.