Project Literacy

What is Project Literacy?

Project Literacy provides free tutoring, instructional materials, and support services for English-speaking adults (aged 16 and older) who are assessed at 8th grade or below in reading level and want to improve reading, writing, and life skills.

Trained community volunteers are matched with learners as one-on-one tutors. Tutors can also assist in small group instruction or conduct family literacy story times at outreach sites. Tutors meet with learners once or twice a week, for a minimum of two hours, at the San Leandro Public Library or other convenient locations. Learners and tutors are from a diverse educational, socioeconomic and cultural backgrounds.


Volunteer tutors and learners work in partnership using methods and materials that are relevant to the learners' needs. Learners work on goals related to their family, work, community, and personal lives. "Real-life" materials such as employment applications, maps, product labels, children's books, and other materials chosen by the learners are used in lessons as well as free instructional resources provided by the program. Learners can use computer literacy software at the Project Literacy office and check out adult "new reader" books. There are a number of specialized programs available at Project Literacy to meet individual needs. Programs include:

  • Families for Literacy
    Children's story times with free book distribution and family activities, held at Main Library and community outreach sites.
  • Workforce Literacy
    Customized and basic literacy instruction provided on or off the worksite.
  • Computer Lab
    Instruction in keyboarding and literacy software.

Computer Lab

Want to improve your spelling? Curious about phonics? Think it would be great to type without having to look at the keys? Would you like to have free email? Would a professional resume come in handy? Come by Project Literacy's Computer Lab and we'll work by your side and show you how to do really useful stuff!

The Project Literacy Computer Lab is available to Project Literacy tutors and learners, in an atmosphere created specifically for adult literacy learners. (The Main Library's Electronic Lab is open to general library members). The Lab is open to tutors and learners any time the library is open. Computers are available on a first come, first served basis. All computers are connected to the Internet, and all of the PCs have a variety of educational software. The Lab is in the Project Literacy office, located on the 2nd floor of the San Leandro Main Library. For computer availability and more information call (510) 577-3944.

Become a Literacy Learner

To qualify as a learner at Project Literacy you must:

  • be 16 years, or older (and not attending high school)
  • speak conversational English
  • read or write at or below an 8th grade level
  • make a minimum 6-month commitment

Become a Literacy Tutor

To qualify as a tutor for Project Literacy, you must:

  • be 16 years, or older
  • tutor a minimum of 2 hours per week
  • make a minimum 6-month commitment
  • complete the tutor training (no previous teaching experience required)

By meeting with a learner two hours a week, you can make a valuable difference in his or her life. You will receive free training, materials, and support. Tutor trainings are conducted 4 times a year. If you are interested in becoming a tutor, call the Project Literacy office to register for a scheduled orientation session. Then, if you wish to commit to becoming a tutor you will attend a full training session. Both the orientation and training sessions are required for new tutors.


Project Literacy is located at the Main Branch of the San Leandro Public Library - 300 Estudillo Avenue, San Leandro, CA 94577. When entering the library building, turn left in the entrance hallway (do not enter the library doors). Take the elevator or stairs to the Project Literacy office on the 2nd floor.

Phone Number & Office Hours

Call Project Literacy at (510) 577-3944.

The Project Literacy office hours may vary from week to week, so please call ahead to be sure the office is open.