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Alta students share experiences

Thursday, June 7, 2018

In celebration of Alta’s 25th anniversary, Alta students around the country were asked to write about the impact the organisation has had on their lives. Since 1992, Alta has provided classes around the country for thousands of Trinidadians who struggle with reading and writing. Alta students enrol in the programme at many different levels of literacy and leave when they have accomplished their literacy goals.

While it is difficult to manage work and family life alongside Alta classes, students continue to persevere and in all cases see changes in their lives after attending Alta classes. In the coming weeks, Alta will share their experiences through this column. This week, two students from the Chaguanas Public Library venue share how Alta has impacted their lives.


My name is Pam. I’m in level two. I came to Alta to better myself and my family. I expected to meet a lot of people willing to help each other. It was not the way I expected but it was better. Alta has changed things in my life because I am reading lots of books now and helping my kids with their homework. I do feel better about myself. I always wanted to spell big words.

When I was younger I didn’t have help. I thought I was managing well until reading got a little harder. I never liked the way I have to hide and make excuses when I had to read. When my children come home from school I can help them in their homework. I felt I could never take part in loud speaking or storytelling. I appreciate Alta class so much. Since I started the class I have improved a lot. As a parent I feel so proud of myself being able to help my children in their homework. I was surprised when I read my first book all by myself. I always felt that I couldn’t read but I surprised myself. At work I am being asked to write information from clients. Sometimes I can’t spell every word so attending Alta was the best thing I have ever done.

Kesha Sancho

When I was younger I always wanted to read an entire book. I would start but when I would get to the difficult words I would just give up. At school and also at meetings you would see persons taking notes. I always wish I was able to do that. Then one day I heard about Alta so I wanted to attend but was ashamed to. I wondered what people would say about this “big woman” and that she can’t read. That feeling made me sick. When someone would ask me to read I would get nervous even with little words like “where” and “there.” I was not able to pronounce them.

Now at the age of 31, I put all my fears behind me and started Alta. I am now in Level two and so proud of myself that I started. One thing I wish that I should have started years ago. In my class, there are four lovely patient and encouraging tutors who make this journey fun and simpler for me. My goal at the end of this journey is to read a book to its entirety also be able to write and pass CXC English.

• Volunteer, donate or sponsor-a-student. Call 621-5708 or email for more info. Keep up to date with ALTA on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram: ALTA


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