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Cause Area

  • Community
  • Computers & Technology
  • Education & Literacy


1100 7th StBldg 1 - Room 229Des Moines, IA 50314 United States

Organization Information

Mission Statement

The Mission of the Adult Literacy Center is to improve literacy, resulting in enhanced self-esteem, more productive daily living and lifelong learning. Utilizing volunteers and new technologies, we teach adults to read, write and comprehend. The Adult Literacy Center at DMACC serves adults from the community and new Iowans who need help to improve their reading, writing, spelling and speaking skills.


The Adult Literacy has served the Des Moines area for 43+ years - initially at Drake University, moving to the DMACC campus in 2018.

Literacy Coaches are volunteers who complete an application and have an interview with our office staff. We generally have one or two Literacy Coach training sessions a month at DMACC Urban Campus that last approximately 2 hours. We have many free resources for coaches to use as well as daily support in the office if they need to call.

We primarily match coaches and students according to the times they are available. If a coach only has time on Monday from 5 to 8PM, we find a student whose time-frame matches. Coaches and their students meet for 1 to 1 ½ hours per week at the same time and day.

As each student's needs are different, we work to reach their personal goals, so there is not "end date" assigned. We do not follow the DMACC school calendar. Although we ask our literacy coaches to make a commitment of at least a year we have many pairs who meet beyond that. This program is cost free and it is not necessary to be a DMACC student to apply and be served.

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