Council of the Federation Literacy Award

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About the award

The award recognizes outstanding achievement, innovative practices and excellence in literacy.  Thirteen winners are chosen each year, one for each province and territory.

The 2016 provincial and territorial award recipients will be announced on International Literacy Day on September 8, 2016.  For more information, visit The Council of the Federation Literacy Award.

The Council of the Federation Literacy Award recipient for 2016 is:

Blue Quills Literacy Centre at University nuhelot’įne thaiyots’į nistameyimâkanak Blue Quills.

The Blue Quills Literacy Centre, housed at the University nuhelot’jne thaiyots’j nistameyimâkanak Blue Quills on the Blue Quills First Nations Reserve in Northeastern Alberta, provides unique programs and services that are embedded in the traditional worldviews of the seven Nations governing Blue Quills. 

The Blue Quills team works to increase literacy and essential skills in response to community needs. Whether it is travelling to deliver literacy and foundational learning off campus, offering tutorial and academic support, providing essential skills workshops and summer literacy camps, or partnering with community or other First Nations colleges, Blue Quills Literacy Centre continues to demonstrate outstanding achievement, innovation, and excellence in literacy and essential skills provision.  In addition, the centre contributes a local voice to national initiatives such as the National Aboriginal Literacy Strategy. 

For more information, visit Council of the Federation.


Past Recipients

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2014 Council of the Federation Literacy Award Recipient

Alberta recipient: Calgary Immigrant Women's Association

For 32 years, the dedicated staff and volunteers of the Calgary Immigrant Women’s Association have been helping improve the lives of immigrant and refugee women, girls, and their families by providing programming to increase the literacy and job skills of clients. Recent immigrants face many barriers to success, and the Association strives to assist individuals in breaking through such barriers.

Working collaboratively with community partners, the Association offers 36 community-based programs and projects that use a holistic approach to service delivery in areas including settlement and integration, literacy and language training, employment support and bridging programs, civic engagement and community development. Clients benefit from customized programming, and participant success rates are as high as 70-80 per cent. The Association exemplifies outstanding achievement, innovative practice, and excellence in literacy.

To read about recipients from across Canada, refer to the Council of the Federation News Release.

2013 Council of the Federation Literacy Award Recipient

Alberta recipient: Further Education Society (Calgary)

Delivering 80 programs and assisting 800 individuals each year, including Aboriginal, English language and financial literacy learners as well as domestic violence victims, this outstanding organization demonstrates innovation and excellence in literacy. The Society focuses on formalized learning, employment opportunities and community participation by collaborating with over 35 partners, such as women’s shelters, new immigrant centers and remand centers.

The Society “envisions a Canada where every man, woman and child reaches their potential, where every parent gets the help he or she needs, where there are no barriers to learning.”  The Further Education Society is a pillar of excellence for Alberta learners and the adult literacy system.

To read about recipients from across Canada, refer to the Council of the Federation News Release.

2012 Council of the Federation Literacy Award Recipient

Alberta recipient: Lisa O'Blenis (Calgary)

Recipients of the 2012 Council of the Federation Literacy Awards were announced on July 24, 2012, during the summer meeting in Halifax.

Ms. O’Blenis is a volunteer tutor with the Calgary Public Library’s Learning Advantage Program, which pairs volunteers with adult literacy learners to achieve their reading, writing and numeracy goals. Lisa is committed to lifelong learning and to helping adults overcome their literacy challenges. See her full biography.

To read about recipients from across Canada, refer to the Council of the Federation News Release.

2011 Council of the Federation Literacy Award Recipient

Alberta recipient: Amber Kidd (Edmonton)

Recipients of the 2011 Council of the Federation Literacy Awards were announced on July 18, 2011, during the summer meeting in Vancouver.

Amber Kidd, an adult literacy learner in Edmonton, was Alberta's 2011 award recipient. Through the help of tutors at Project Adult Learning Society, she overcame her numeracy challenges to reach her goal of taking heavy equipment operator  training program to provide a better life for her children and model the value of learning. 

To read about recipients from across Canada, refer to the Council of the Federation News Release.

2010 Council of the Federation Literacy Award Recipient

Alberta recipient: Margaret Chegwin (Wetaskiwin)

Recipients of the 2010 Council of the Federation Literacy Awards were announced on August 4, 2010, during the summer meeting in Winnipeg.

Margaret Chegwin, a volunteer in many capacities with the Wetaskiwin Community Literacy Program, was Alberta's 2010 award recipient. Her nominators describe her as a passionate, giving, and inspiring individual who strives to learn all that she can about literacy and regards literacy as “one of the greatest gifts” she can help give.

To read about recipients from across Canada, refer to the Council of the Federation News Release.

2009 Council of the Federation Literacy Award Recipient

Alberta recipient: Ken Steele (Edmonton)

Ken Steele of Edmonton, a writer and ambassador for literacy, was Alberta’s 2009 recipient of the Council of the Federation Literacy Award.

In the words of the Premier, the Honourable Ed Stelmach, “Across Alberta, remarkable adults have been making positive changes in their lives and inspiring others by improving their levels of literacy”. Mr. Steele exemplified this and had contributed to the advancement of literacy in Alberta.

Read more about Ken Steele

2008 Council of the Federation Literacy Award Recipient

Alberta recipient: Daniel Haines (Edmonton)

Daniel Haines, a student with Project Adult Literacy Society and strong advocate for literacy, was Alberta's 2008 recipient of the Council of the Federation Literacy Award.

Honourable Doug Horner, Minister of Alberta Advanced Education and Technology presented the award at an International Adult Learners Week celebration held at CBC Centre Stage on September 11.

News Release: Outstanding adult literacy learner receives award

2007 Council of the Federation Literacy Award Recipient

Alberta recipient: Dr. Mary Norton (Edmonton)

Dr. Mary Norton, an adult literacy educator with more than 30 years of experience in the field, was Alberta's 2007 recipient of the Council of the Federation Literacy Award. The award was presented by Honourable Doug Horner, Minister of Advanced Education and Technology at an International Literacy Day celebration at Edmonton City Hall on September 7.

News Release: Edmonton adult literacy educator honoured

2006 Council of the Federation Literacy Award Recipients

Alberta recipient: Betty Martin (Edmonton)

The Council of the Federation announced provincial/territorial award recipients on July 28, 2006 during its meeting in St. John's, Newfoundland. Betty Martin, a volunteer tutor with the Project Adult Literacy Society (PALS), was Alberta's recipient of the award for 2006.

To read about the recipients from across Canada, refer to the Council of the Federation News Release.

2005 Council of the Federation Literacy Award Recipients

Alberta recipient: Leonard Duby (Calgary)

The first recipients of the Council of the Federation Literacy Award were announced in August 2005 at the Council of the Federation meeting in Alberta. Leonard Duby received his award at a presentation on September 8, 2005.

To read about the recipients from across Candada, refer to the Council of the Federation News Release.