Welcome to 2016.
Please find attached a copy of Belonging – A Place To Belong’s 2016 newsletter.
It is our pleasure to share some updates, reflections and plans for this year and to invite you to a range of learning events.
Feel free to pass on to others who may be interested.
The journal Literacy and Numeracy Studies published by the University of Technology, Sydney has recently published an article about the Reading and Writing Group at A Place to Belong.
The article is called “He was learning to read, but he wasn’t learning to live :Socially inclusive learning in a community setting” by Greg Marston of QUT and Jeffrey Johnson-Abdelmalik .
The link to the journal article http://epress.lib.uts.edu.au/journals/index.php/lnj/issue/view/350
In October 2014, Anglicare Southern Qld published the report “He was learning to read, but he wasn’t learning to live.” based on a year’s research in 2013 into the Reading and Writing Group. To quote from the Conclusion to the report :
“RAW is a small community-based program doing remarkable work. The teachers and the tutors do not shy away from some difficult problems. The flexibility, good humour and commitment from the teacher and the tutors and the staff of A Place to Belong who interact with the program is evident. So, what can a small program like this teach the wider community? It reinforces the close link between literacy and social inclusion. In practice, the streams of literacy training and social inclusion work are often siloed. TAFE provides training in reading and writing skills but it is left to other agencies to do the work of social inclusion. What is missed in this approach is the gestalt of shared understandings and knowledge about these deeply connected needs.”
Read report… He was learning to read, but he wasn’t learning to live
In July 2013 A Place to Belong began an exciting new research project in collaboration with the Queensland University of Technology.
People with mental health problems, learning difficulties and poor literacy and numeracy are at risk of social exclusion including homelessness. They often lack opportunities for education and employment. Academic research has demonstrated a link between literacy and numeracy and social inclusion, however the ways in which literacy can help with social inclusion are not well understood. The Reading and Writing Group is embedded in an agency (APTB) that supports social inclusion and we suspect that this relationship is critical. This year long study will evaluate the service and look carefully at what makes it work or gets in the way of success. It is hoped that one of the outcomes will be a model that can be applied more broadly across other human services
The research is being conducted by Prof Greg Marston of the School of Public Health and Social Work of QUT, and Dr. Jeffrey Johnson-Abdelmalik who is also the Service Improvement Coordinator of APTB.
Anglicare has provided administrative support to the project and also contributes to its review and monitoring.