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2016 Top-Rated Nonprofit

Literacy Pittsburgh

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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Adult Education, Education, Ethnic & Immigrant Centers, Human Services, Immigration, Job Training, Literacy, Remedial Reading & Encouragement, Vocational Counseling

Mission: The mission of Literacy Pittsburgh is better lives through learning.

Results: After 50 hours of instruction, 71% of students show improvement on standardized tests. We welcome people from more than 90 different countries and help them to thrive in their new home. Last year, 74% of students reported increased confidence with their English, reading, writing or math skills, positioning them for future success. Each year, more than 650 volunteers give 77,000 hours to help our students succeed.

Target demographics: adults and families who seek more fulfilling and productive lives through education

Direct beneficiaries per year: 4,500 adults and families

Geographic areas served: Allegheny and Beaver Counties

Programs: workforce skills, adult reading, writing and math skills, English as a second language, immigrant and refugee support, family literacy, high school equivalency exam prep, and Oasis intergenerational tutoring.

Community Stories

143 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

Client Served

Rating: 5

Gplc is a great place if you're looking to get your G.E.D , although it offers so much more. With amazing teaching staff and advisors you will learn not only the things needed to obtain your G.E.D ,but also learn where you wanna be in life and the steps needed to get there. My experience here at Gplc has been nothing short of amazing. I've learned so much not only about education but also about myself. I would highly recommend anyone looking to further their education to look into Gplc.

Client Served

Rating: 5

GPLC is a great program for anybody trying to get their G.E.D. or their life on track staff is friendly and professional .The class scheduling is very flexible. I am very happy and satisfied with my time here.

Client Served

Rating: 5

GPLC far exceeded my expectations in helping me to receive my GED. I thought I wouldn't be able to do it, but I did. Thank you all for our help.

Jaquin O.

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

My Name is Jaquin , GPLC School is helping me get my GED. My Experience here at GPLC is really great! My Teacher is amazing . She help's me understand everything I need to know on what's going to be on the GED test. Thank you GPLC for giving me a second chance on life.

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

GPLC did amazing things for me! Picking this school was one of the best choices that I have made as far as furthering my education. They work with your schedule also with you one-on-one. And that is exactly what I needing to succeed.

Thank you GPLC !

Client Served

Rating: 5

I came to GPLC to help achieve my GED. This was not the first program I was apart of so my expectations were low, however; I was greatly impressed after a few classes. Afterwards I feel blessed to have been a student at GPLC. In my few months I achieved my GED diploma thanks to the whole GPLC staff. Ms Rue had a great method of teaching for a group of classmates at different levels we all learned together and she left no one behind which i really enjoyed. She is a teacher I will never forget because not only did she educate me, but she inspired me to go forward in life and pursue my goals. The whole GPLC staff were beyond friendly. The students and staff became basically family to me. GPLC is top notch and so is everyone apart of it.

Client Served

Rating: 5

I like gplc so mush because help me to learn Anglish _computer and have great teacher

tkank for gplc

iyad ziada

GreggPhillis

Client Served

Rating: 5

GPLC helped me get my G.E.D. and get enrolled in college where I got my business degree.GPLC has continued to help me in my job hunt as well as numerous other related dealings.I continue to use GPLC as their staff has been very helpful to me in my time of need.So please,your support is greatly needed and appreciated. I will get to the next level thanks to your support. Thanx and God Bless!

Previous Stories
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Client Served

Rating: 5

I chose G.P.L.C.(Greater Pittsburgh Literary Council ) after looking into many other programs. It was quite easy for me to see that G.P.L.C. was the right fit for me. G.P.L.C was very encouraging and that helped me in my obtaining my G.E.D. My instructor, Kathy, was very key to me starting college classes. I have made the dean's list two semesters in a row and I am entering my last full semester at C.C.A.C. I would like people to know just how necessary that organizations such as G.P.L.C. are in guiding people to adult education with a good foundation. I wish to thank G.P.L.C. for all of their continued support in my goals. Thanx!

1

Client Served

Rating: 5

I am excited to be a student at GPLC. I am working on my GED and things are going great!

To my instructor Kathy, I thank you for all your help.

3

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I just completed my training to become an adult basic education tutor and am blown away by the staff's enthusiasm, dedication, and passion for the mission. They are very talented trainers themselves - keeping the 4 nights of training fun and light-hearted, yet super-impactful. I'm eagerly waiting my first student!

Volunteer

Rating: 5

The school helps people a lot with your education and its very simple with everything you want to know so come to gplc and get your education in Pittsburgh its worth the time and day

Client Served

Rating: 5

It was 2009 and I finally decided to get my GED. It’s important to know that I dropped out of middle school and I didn’t learn anything while I was there. The only math problem I learned was two groups of black people plus two opposite neighborhoods equals violence and no education. So when I practiced for my GED I knew nothing but basic elementary stuff. Still I taught myself to multiple and with the help of my mom and brother I learned division. That’s all I knew when I got to GPLC.

Ms. Anita was my teacher and she taught me everything I know about math. We started out with decimals then worked our way up to Geometry. The math was tough and confusing, but what was more confusing than the math was trying to figure out how Ms. Anita made learning it so easy. Not only would she explain it the whole class on the board, she would also sit with her students one on one and make sure we all understood the work before she moved on. Ms. Anita is a great teacher, but even a greater person, and the time I spend in her class is something that I’ll never forget.

After Ms. Anita’s class I would go to Rachel’s class for reading and writing. There was two things I liked about Rachel’s class. One it was fun, and two there was no math. Rachel would sometimes start class off by letting us write essays, afterwards she would go over the essay and correct it for you and show you what you did wrong. When we did reading we would take turns reading out loud, then go over the answers together. Rachel did what a lot of teachers struggle to do or just chose not to do. She made learning fun and she made me look forward to going to school each day. I was told that my score of 710 in the reading section of the GED test was one of the highest scores in the country and almost a perfect score. That wouldn’t have been possible without Rachel.

GPLC isn’t just two teachers. The way I feel about my two teachers is the way other GPLC students feel about their one, two, or three teachers or tutor. GPLC is filled with great wonderful, amazing people from the teachers in class to Ms. Gail at the front desk. My advice to people thinking about going to GPLC is to trust and believe in these people because the second you walk through that door, they believe in you. Thank you GPLC!

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I've volunteered for about 8 years. The students learn a lot and so do the volunteers. My time with GPLC is always among the highlights of my week.

Previous Stories

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I've been a GPLC volunteer for 7 years, working with both Adult Basic Education and ESL students. I enjoy watching ABE learners discover that literacy is the path to an understanding and appreciation of a much larger world. Students find themselves working at the polls on Election Day, watching and understanding TV shows they would have ignored before coming to GPLC, knowing they can make good choices at the grocery store because they understand food labels, reading "for fun" -- in short, expanding their lives. With ESL students, I enjoy interpreting American culture and watching them discover that the American dream is for them. Being a GPLC volunteer is a good way to "give back", make new friends and have fun.

1

Client Served

Rating: 5

I'm excited about GPLC and how they are doing great things in the community. Their organization has helped several people such as myself. Their staff were very helpful, respectful, and caring. I hope only the best for Greater Pittsburgh Literacy Council. You really are an amazing non profit organization.

Client Served

Rating: 5

I attend classes at GPLC and I love it! They are really helping me to achieve my goal in obtaining my GED. I hope to have it before the end of this year. I want to attend the graduation celebration that I hear about so often. Sadly, I was not able to attend their 10th graduation event last Friday, at Macy's due to another commitment. But I'm excited to hear they celebrate their students. You are number one GPLC in serving adults!

1

Volunteer

Rating: 4

On Friday, September 5, 2014 I attened the graduation celebration which was the 10th annual GED grauation for The Greater Pittsburgh Literacy Council and it was the nicest graduation I have been to. Everyone was so very happy and the graduates were over willmed with joy and love. This was my first time going to this event and I am so very glad I went. Everyone did a great job. (GPLC, GOOD LOOKING OUT.)

Client Served

Rating: 5

I was fortunate to be able to take the 2013 GED tests and pass it at GPLC! I will attend the graduation on September 5. I'll dawn my cap and gown proudly. I'm happy I did it! Now I am in nursing school. WOW!

There is now the 2014 version which I heard is so different and much harder. Thank you GPLC staff, you are a GREAT organization!

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I cannot speak highly enough of GPLC. While I lived in Pittsburgh, I volunteered as an ESL tutor, and it was a wonderful experience. The training I received when beginning, plus having a mentor tutor and a great supervisor helped me feel at ease going into my first session. The tips and extra materials GPLC provided me for my classes were immensely helpful. I also loved that there was assessment of each student, so that I knew what to focus on, and also whether or not my students were progressing.

On a whole other level, I just loved working with my students—they were extremely dedicated to learning English, and it encouraged me to be as equally dedicated to teaching them. I would recommend volunteering through GPLC to anyone interested.

Client Served

Rating: 5

Greater Pittsburgh Literacy Council's downtown center continues to do great things in helping people like me enhance on their skills that were dormant for so long. I started the program recently and I'm enjoying learning. I was referred by a friend and she said I would not be dissappointed and I'm not. They have an excellent team. To you the staff at GPLC, I say thank you.

Client Served

Rating: 5

I think GPLC is a very helpful program I have been here for 3 months and caught up on a lot of things I forgot when I was in high school. Your can really achieve your goals by coming here and going threw the process of this program.

Client Served

Rating: 4

I called GPLC this year.. I want a better future for myself.. I have 2 kids and I want them to know no matter how old or hard things are you can always make a better life and future for yourself.. I like my teacher she helps me out a lot and she makes understand things a lot better.. so I think is a best place for people to go to better themselves im glad I came here..

Client Served

Rating: 5

I called GPLC in 2009 to inquire about GED classes. At first I was nervous and I didn't know what to expect. Because I didn't think I would be able to learn after having brain surgery. While talking on the phone to a staff person and explaining my situation I still was nervous. The staff person eased my concerns by encouraging me to give it a try. I did! While attending the orientation I was still so nervous. The staff that administrated the test was very nice and undertanding. He made me feel comfortable and unashame. He told me to do my best. When I started classes they helped me a lot. Being in class I was encouraged by my classmates and teacher. I was learning! As I was learnin, I became so excited about working even harder to achieve my goal. The goal of getting my GED. I'm continuing my studies at GPLC and looking forward to passing the GED test and participating in their GED graduation one day. Thank you to all the GPLC staff!

Advisor

Rating: 5

I have been a member of the Advisory Board for many years and have the utmost faith in the leadership and work of GPLC. They know what needs to be done, and they DO it.

Being able to read is one of God's greatest gifts to man. Whether born in an English-speaking country or learning English as a foreigner, the ability to read will enriches every aspect of life.

Any person who is lucky enough to be taken under the wing of GPLC is lucky indeed and will be forever grateful.

Patricia Prattis Jennings

Client Served

Rating: 5

I had a wonderful experience at GPLC. It was a life changing experience. I am so happy for all the help I received from the staff. Thank you all for being so kind. I continue to work on bettering myself so that I can pass it on.

Client Served

Rating: 5

I enjoy my tutoring sessions at the Greater Pittsburgh Literacy Council. I've been attending there six years now. I love it! When I first started I was in a class at the downtown center. After receiving a job at one of the UPMC Hospitals, I continued my studies with a tutor. I'm learning alot and working really hard to reach my GED goal. GPLC has helped me in so many areas. I'm just thankful for the free classes they have. Thank you GPLC!

Client Served

Rating: 5


It's with much appreciation that I say "thank you GPLC". This program is really about serving and helping to make a change in the lives of those that walk through those doors looking to find help. I needed help in my math so that I could take the math part of the GED test. I was lacking in understanding of doing word problems. They confused me. I was afraid of them. I would read the problem over and over all to no avail in how to attack the problem. Once I started class, I was reluctant about answering questions because of the fear of having the wrong answer. I continued to attend class, complete my homework assignments and work hard to master the problems. My teachers were incredible. They believed in me. I'm so happy I continued to go to class. What a difference it made. After being in the program for a couple of years even leaving and returning later, I obtained my goal in passing the math part of the GED test. I'm a product of GPLC. To all the staff thank you for your help. Now, I'm attending CCAC!

Jaemin C.

Client Served

Rating: 5

Although it's my third month with GPLC, I love to have a class with my tutor. Other than the English class, it is also a good chance to learn about the place I live. I thank so much to all the members of GPLC who gave me an opportunity to learn.

Client Served

Rating: 5

I have been going to GPLC for about three years for their English lessons. This way I can speak with native speakers to better understand the culture and idiomatic expressions. My ultimate goal is to keep my job as a customer service rep at work.

Client Served

Rating: 5

GPLC has great programs and tutors who help me improve my English and give me lots of good experiences!

Client Served

Rating: 5

I came to GPLC in 2012 to learn English. I attended class regular. I was learning the English language and also making friends. My teachers were helpful and willing to help me overcome the barriers that I was facing. After ESL classes, I transitioned into ABE classes to prepare for my GED. I am now taking GED classes. I hope to one day achieve my goal in getting my GED.

I am really grateful for GPLC. Thank you GPLC!

Client Served

Rating: 5

I attended GPLC in 2013. It is a great program and the teachers and volunteers are very helpful. I recieced my GED within a few months from hard work and the understanding from the volunteers. I am very satisfied and greatful for all the help and classes they provided me with. I highly recommend GPLC. They have outstanding staff, great classes, and if you don't understand they are always willing to help.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

The Greater Pittsburgh Literacy Council is a great organization to be a part of. The staff goes far out of their way to see that students succeed and grow during their time here. I have seen GPLC change many lives and know they will only continue to change lives of adults around Pittsburgh.

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

My friend attended the Greater Pittsburgh Literacy Council in 2012 and 2013. In 2013 she reached her goal to enhance in her math skills after being out of school for many years. She always had so many positive things to say about the program, and staff. I'm happy that she was able to find a program that helped her. And she didn't pay anything. So kudos to a wonderful organization that helped my friend. Keep up the wonderful work GPLC!

Client Served

Rating: 5

I had a wonderful experience as a student of GPLC.
Last fall I was panicking about whether I could pass the GED on my own, and feeling a little lost about the whole process since they were changing the format of the GED in 2014. I searched online for local help and found GPLC. I went downtown a couple time for orientation (going over the rules) and a placement test (just to gauge where I was at in Math and English skills) before I was placed in a class I attended twice a week for the next few months. Easy!
I was the victim of an illegitimate homeschooling "education" and I really did not have the math background I needed to pass the GED; on top of that, I'd never taken a standardized test in my life, so I needed guidance. I like math though! I love how there's a journey and a system and a clear answer. The teacher was great about giving clear instructions and examples so that difficult math problems became easy math problems. Every single class, I learned something new.
I was able to take the GED and pass all 4 tests! The GPLC paid the cost ($30 per test) through their scholarship program, which is very generous. (I actually donated that amount back to them during Pittsburgh's annual Day of Giving, but that's a secret.)
Navigating adult education on your own is daunting. I was really relieved to find GPLC and get some guidance through the process.

Client Served

Rating: 5

I want to thank the Greater Pittsburgh Literacy Council because they are giving me a well needed education and are very patient with me. They are helping me fulfill my dreams of getting my GED so I can go onto some sort of other schooling. My goal is to become a Veterinarian Technician.

For all you do for me and others, I say thank you GPLC.