The State Fair Community College Adult Education and Literacy (AEL) program has received a $10,000 grant from the Dollar General Literacy Foundation to promote community-wide literacy through technology.

The one-year project, called “Engaging, Empowering and Educating through Technology,” will begin on July 1.

Deb Williams, AEL program director, said the grant will provide computers and computer-aided instruction to the 900 students enrolled in the program, which includes 21 classrooms in nine counties in west central Missouri: Benton, Carroll, Cooper, Henry, Johnson, Lafayette, Pettis, Saline, and St. Clair.

“Our goal is to provide technology skills that can be put into practice outside the classroom to improve life, work and academic skills,” said Williams.

The SFCC Brain Cafe will provide basic AEL training and technology support for the 21 classroom teachers who will be involved in the project. Williams will be responsible for daily implementation of the project.

The SFCC AEL program has been providing adult education services for 40 years. It provides basic education and secondary education to adults seeking to prepare for the GED and literacy education for adults wanting to brush up on basic skills, English as a Second Language skills, family literacy, preparation for post-secondary education or training and education in obtaining or retaining employment.

The Dollar General Literacy Foundation this year awarded more than $6 million in grants to adult, family and summer literacy programs at more than 700 schools, nonprofits and literacy organizations. Since its inception in 1993, the foundation has awarded more than $81 million in grants to nonprofit organizations, helping more than 4.7 million people take their first steps toward literacy or continued education.

"At Dollar General, we are passionate about our mission of serving others throughout the communities we serve," said Rick Dreiling, chairman and CEO of Dollar General. "It's exciting to see the Dollar General Literacy Foundation's outreach in action as we partner with organizations to further education and literacy and make a real difference in people's lives."