Nonprofit Promotes Community Literacy Skills Through Tutoring Program

Nonprofit Promotes Community Literacy Skills Through Tutoring Program
Janet Cruz / 26 Aug 2023 / No Comments » Comments

By Janet Cruz

It is never too late to learn to read or improve language skills so one local nonprofit in Lake Havasu City aims to help residents from school age and beyond, master those basic skills.

“Some adults and kids in school need to improve their language skills. Other adults need help reading legal documents or supporting their children in their schoolwork,” said Lake Havasu Literacy Council director Sandy Ribbons.

“We have these special materials for adults which support reading, writing and speaking skills.”

The Lake Havasu Literacy Council provides free help with language and reading skills for local residents.

The nonprofit is not new to Lake Havasu City, according to Ribbons. The Lake Havasu Literacy Council began in 1977 with Anna Sutton as director. She was trained using the Laubach Method which focuses on tutoring adults, especially second language adults.

In 1981, a new director was later named and originally began in Kingman before the Lake Havasu City organization became a part of a program within the Interagency Council before its closure. Ribbons was the coordinator before she later took over as director in 2021.

Photo Courtesy of Lake Havasu Literacy Council Facebook page.

“I became a tutor in the program in 2013. When Interagency closed, we became part of Workplace Education and Literacy Coalition of Mohave County (WELCOME) which serves Bullhead city, Kingman and Lake Havasu literacy needs,” Ribbons  said.

Before her time at the nonprofit, Ribbons was a teacher and high school principal and she said she saw a need for more to take part in the program.

“I felt it was important to start tutoring school-age students as well as adults. “We added several volunteer tutors to the Literacy Council and worked with school personnel to add volunteer tutors at their schools,” Ribbons said.

The nonprofit works with teachers and parents to meet the student’s needs. There are tutors working at five elementary schools within the Lake Havasu Unified School District.

Volunteer tutor Gail Malay, assists a student in the tutoring program within the LHUSD. Submitted photo by Sandy Ribbons

The nonprofit pairs students with a volunteer tutor after school for at least one hour per week, where they are provided help with reading and writing skills and their homework. Adults requesting tutoring, meet with a volunteer at the library for one-on-one tutoring.

Literacy materials for adults are available at the Mohave County Library. Photo Courtesy of Lake Havasu Literacy Council Facebook

“We tutored over 30 students this past year. The tutoring program has been very successful and we now have a big demand but shortage in volunteers. We would like to expand to other schools but we need additional tutors,” Ribbons said.

Sandy Ribbons tutoring a student. Submitted photo Sandy Ribbons

For more information on services offered, visit the Lake Havasu Literacy Council Facebook page, or visit the website at You can also contact Sandy Robbins at 909-226-2747 or email her at

If anyone is interested in volunteering as a tutor, there will be an informational Sept, 6, at 4 p.m., at the Lake Havasu Public Library for all interested volunteer tutors.


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