The Literacy Volunteers On The Green boast a new cast of leaders.

Janet Kamm recently assumed the reins as president of the New Milford volunteer organization's board of directors.

"Western Connecticut is home to many individuals who have come from other countries to establish new lives filled with hope and dreams," saidKamm, who will be at the helm throughout 2015. "We light their paths and help open the gates to the American dream.

"The key to their future success is the mastery of English," she explained. "The volunteers of LVG are committed to helping these individuals by offering free lessons in English, with goals set by each individual student."

Joining Kamm as officers on the board of directors are Carol McCarthy, vice president; Carol Beck, secretary; and Laura Daigle, treasurer.

They will be supported by fellow board members Henry Beary; Kathleen Bertram; Cecilia Buck-Taylor; Sue McWhinnie; Casey Pascal; Annie Swanson; Eloisa Tello-Barlow; and Margaret FitzPatrick Wiener.

"Understanding the English language competently," adds Kamm, "can lead to better employment, clear communication with doctors, schools, and clients, with getting a driver's license, a GED, or getting into college, or becoming an American citizen."

Past president Arri Sendzimir put into perspective the importance of Literacy on the Green to the community.

"Over the last 10 years, Literacy Volunteers on the Green has engaged hundreds of individuals in northwest Connecticut as teachers of English and many hundreds more as their students," she noted. "My strongest memories are of the volunteer teachers glowing with pride as their students timidly communicate in English about their latest accomplishments in the work or school arena.

"So many of these students come from Europe, Asia, or South America, and one can see the need and the hope in their faces." Sendzimir added, "The growth of the organization, due to the excellence of its board of directors, reflects the success of this wonderful community."

Literacy Volunteers on the Green is a nonprofit organization, funded through grants and donations, which provides free literacy and English as a second language instruction to adults in northern Fairfield and Litchfield counties.

Programs include basic reading and writing for native English speakers, English as a second language and preparation for citizenship.

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