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volunteer helping a learned at another computer

Adult Literacy Tutor Training

Authored on
September 10, 2022

Make a difference in someone’s life — become a Volunteer Adult Literacy Tutor at Santa Barbara Public Library!

New volunteers must take a nine-hour training course before being matched with an adult learner. The next training is offered Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday September 27, 28, 29, at the Eastside Library, 1102 E. Montecito Street, from 6:00 PM to 9:00 PM. Dinner will be provided for this 3 day training. Please register for the tutor training at the Library’s website.

This introductory tutor training covers all the fundamentals to begin tutoring. Ongoing tutor support and additional training is available.

Volunteer tutors work once or twice a week to help an adult learner reach important goals, such as getting or doing a better job, getting a GED, becoming a citizen, or helping children with homework. 

No prior teaching experience is necessary to become a successful tutor; however, commitment, imagination, energy, flexibility, patience, and persistence are highly desirable qualities for tutors. 

Bilingual tutors who speak both English and Spanish are especially in demand. The California State Library, whose grant funding supports the Adult Literacy Program, recently began offering funding for English as a Second Language funding. This new funding is allowing SBPL to expand their offerings to ESL students, which previously relied exclusively on grant funding from other sources. 

“While tutors obviously make a difference in the lives of the learners they work with, tutors often report they learn just as much for the experience,” said Library Director Jessica Cadiente. “Adult Literacy is central to the Library’s mission, and we couldn’t offer this program without the hard work of dedicated volunteers.” 

For over 30 years, the Santa Barbara Public Library Adult Literacy Program has helped thousands of local residents reach their learning goals. Volunteer to make a difference in the community.

Santa Barbara Public Library is a department of the City of Santa Barbara. Visit the Santa Barbara Public Library online at for information about programs and services. All library programs are free and open to the public.