Water Street Coffee Joint to host benefit to support adult literacy

KALAMAZOO, MI — Coffee lovers can drink to adult literacy by attending the first-ever Water Street Literacy Connection Benefit on Saturday, September 26, 2015.

All day on Saturday, Water Street Coffee Joint will play host to the Literacy Connection Benefit featuring Kalamazoo Mayor Bobby Hopewell and Dr. Janice Brown of The Kalamazoo Promise. Patrons are invited to round up their purchases by $1 or more, and pledge to “Team Bobby” or “Team Janice” in a friendly competition. All proceeds benefit adult literacy.

“We are supporting the Kalamazoo Literacy Council because it demonstrates the best qualities at work in our community: collaboration, dedicated volunteers, and a commitment to provide quality adult instruction and resources,” Mayor Hopewell and Dr. Brown said in a joint statement. “Through these efforts we are opening the doors for hundreds of adult learners who want to improve their skills.”

Volunteers from the Kalamazoo Literacy Council (KLC) will be stationed in Water Street locations to share information and have conversations about adult literacy. The KLC currently has nearly 200 volunteers serving more than 350 adult learners throughout Kalamazoo County.

“The Council’s work is led by volunteers,” said KLC Annual Campaign Chairperson Chris Praedel.  “We felt it was important for those who visit Water Street for this event to learn first-hand what our volunteers do to help adults learn.”

The benefit will be hosted at all four Water Street locations—downtown, Oakland Drive, West Centre Avenue, and Borgess at Gull Road—during their standard open hours. This is one of several activities scheduled to celebrate National Adult Education and Family Literacy Week, which is September 21-26. For an additional opportunity to help the KLC, click here to read about the ProLiteracy Day of Giving, another part of Adult Education and Family Literacy Week.

“Water Street Coffee Joint is pleased to help raise awareness for adult literacy,” said Water Street Coffee Joint Founder Mark Smutek. “Many of our patrons read, check emails, and work while enjoying a cup of coffee. Everyone should have the ability to read what they want.”

The KLC is a non-profit organization dedicated to improving adult literacy in Kalamazoo County. It provides free one-on-one tutoring and literacy classes to struggling adult readers. Donations support the Everyone Needs to Read Annual Campaign, because everyone needs to read to manage their health, get a job, and help their children be successful in school.

Water Street Coffee Joint locations and Saturday hours are as follows. 

DOWNTOWN                       OAKLAND                             CENTRE                                        BORGESS
315 East Water Street     3037 Oakland Drive         245 West Centre Avenue      1521 Gull Road
Kalamazoo, MI 49007      Kalamazoo, MI 49008     Portage, MI 49024                   Kalamazoo, MI  49048
7:45 a.m.—11:00 p.m.     7:00 a.m.—11:00 p.m.     7:00 a.m.—11:00 p.m.             7:30 a.m.—9:00 p.m.

For more information, call (269) 382-0490 ext. 222, or visit www.kalamazooliteracy.org.