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Literacy is defined as the ability to read, write, speak, compute, and solve problems at the level needed to function on the job, in the family, and in the community.  Thirty million adults in the U.S. have a very limited ability to read and write or are not literate in English.

Literacy is a key indicator of quality of life.  Poor readers are more likely to be unemployed, to live in poverty, and to have health problems and no medical insurance.

Literacy Rates

1) The adult illiteracy rate for Muskegon County is 18% (population estimated at 172,188 by US Census 2010).  It is estimated that nearly 31,000 adults in Muskegon County are functionally illiterate.  This is enough people to fill the Frauenthal Center for the Performing Arts more than 18 times!

2) Muskegon’s July 2010 unemployment rate was reported at 14%, which is above the state and national average.  Half of all people who are chronically unemployed are not functionally literate.

3) Nearly 24,000 people in Muskegon County who are over 18 do not have a high school diploma.  Over 100,000 do not have a bachelor’s degree.  High school graduates earn approximately $7200 more annually than non-high school completers.

4) According to the Michigan Community College Association, 60-80 percent of entering students require remediation prior to engaging in post-secondary education college courses.

5) One out of three working-age Michigan adults — 1.7 million people — lack the basic skills or credentials to attain family-sustaining jobs and contribute to the state’s economy.

6) The United States ranks fifth on adult literacy skills when compared to other industrialized nations.


Please  browse our webpages to find out what we do and how you can help!

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 Our programs are made possible in part through grants from Alcoa Howmet, the Community Foundation of Muskegon County, the Anton Family Fund and the Greater Muskegon Women and Children’s Fund,  the Greater Muskegon Service League,  the Michigan Office of Adult Education, the Gerber Foundation, Dollar General, Target, and Proliteracy’s National Book Fund, along with support from the Muskegon Area Intermediate School District and the Muskegon Area District Library and private donors.

We appreciate our collaborative partners:

The MAISD Great Start Collaborative
and the Lakeshore Literacy Coalition.


Read Muskegon
PO Box 1312
Muskegon, MI 49443-1312
Phone: (231) 766-5040
E-mail: info@readmuskegon.org

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