UIC presents at parent fall leadership conference

On Saturday, Dec. 1, CFL took part in Turning the Page’s Fall Parent Leadership Conference. This event focused specifically on the North Lawndale community and sought to bring together parents and community organizations to network and learn from one another. Attendees discussed strategies for accessing resources and developed plans for parent-led, school-based, collaborative initiatives. While the day consisted of many engaging sessions, a particular highlight was the dynamic presentation, “What is a Stakeholder?”, led by our very own Shilanda Hall. Shilanda facilitated a fantastic group discussion that challenged attendees to consider this African proverb: “If you think you are too small to make a difference, you haven’t spent the night with a mosquito”. 


Keep RCADD in mind for #GIVINGTUESDAY this year!

Have you ever thought to yourself, ‘I’d love to donate to RCADD to further their services?’ Well, now you can!

Don’t want to wait until #GIVINGTUESDAY? You can donate now, too!

RCADD is a part of UIC’s College of Education Center for Literacy. Click to donate.

Make sure you scroll all the way down to select Center for Literacy. Once you enter your amount, you’ll be taken to another page. If you would like to specify for your gift amount to go to RCADD, please write RCADD under “Additional Instructions”.  

AmeriCorps Opening Day Ceremony 2018 in Springfield

A new full-time corps of 13 AmeriCorps members represented the UIC Center for Literacy at the Oct 17th Opening Day Ceremony (Springfield, IL). The day started with a visit to the Abraham Lincoln Museum where members learned about the president’s life and commitment to service in Illinois.

Over 1,000 AmeriCorps members from the state were present to represent volunteers serving in a variety of capacities: health, education, emergency preparedness, justice programs and more! Members marched to the state capital to take an oath of service.  After the ceremony members attended workshops where they were able to learn about other programs and topics such as: Soft Skills, Networking, Life After AmeriCorps, and Wellness. Our AmeriCorps Director, Ruby Camacho presented a session on Useful Tools & Resources for New Members.


A Thank You note from School District 54

We wanted to share our appreciation for School District 54’s thank you letter today. It does enrich our staffs’ ambitions towards CFL’s Resource Center for Autism and Developmental Delay(RCADD) and for our communities. We are here to work with you and move forward together to provide a better service and education for our community. 


More information about School District 54’s Autism Resource Center can be found here. 


Expo lets employees explore campus resources

October 18, 2018

Hundreds of employees attended the UIC All Employee Expo Oct. 16 in Student Center East.

Hundreds of UIC employees packed the Illinois Rooms in Student Center East Oct. 16 to learn more about campus resources during the UIC All Employee Expo.

More than 800 employees registered for the event, which featured campus and community representatives at about 60 booths — ranging from Human Resources and Campus Recreation to campus eateries and community businesses.

The event was modeled after an annual employee expo at the Urbana-Champaign campus that has been ongoing since the 1970s, said Mariola Arriola, an event organizer from the Staff Advisory Council.

“It went well, and we are hoping to continue with it in the future,” said Arriola, a business manager in the UIC student centers. “I hope employees received information on campus resources that they would not have known about.”

The event provided an opportunity for employees to meet cross-campus colleagues and find contacts and resources to help navigate their career and interests on campus. A shuttle was available to provide easy transportation for employees from the west side of campus to the event in Student Center East.

Jason Rochon, associate information technology security officer with the Academic Computing and Communications Center (ACCC), shared his knowledge on cyberattacks with other UIC employees during the event.

“Security is ever-changing, so we want to bring awareness to the services and protection that we offer and type of security attacks going on in today’s times,” he said.

Annmarie Vecchione from the Chancellor’s Committee on the Status of Women recruited new members to the group, which advises the chancellor on issues related to women on campus.

“We had quite a lot of foot traffic and some nice conversations with people new to UIC and other people who had been involved and were looking to get involved again,” said Veccione, residential housing coordinator in UIC Campus Housing.

The event was organized by the UIC Human Resources, the Academic Professional Advisory Committee and the Staff Advisory Council.

“It was a great opportunity for new and old employees to find out what UIC offers,” said Mary Berta, a member of the Academic Professional Advisory Committee who helped organize the event and associate to the head of occupational therapy. “It exceeded my expectations.”

Visit the EXPO website for links to participating departments and vendors.

National Veteran’s Day Donation Drive

Hello everyone, 
National Veteran’s Day is quickly approaching and UIC AmeriCorps Project MORE is currently seeking donations to support veterans living on Chicago’s west side. With your donations, Projetct MORE will be able to setup a pop-up shop on the first floor of a veteran’s housing facility that will allow Veteran’s to shop for what they need as we gear up for a cold winter. 
We need your help to make this event a success! Please donate any of the following items: 
Canned goods
Non-perishable foods such as rice, pasta or cereal
Toiletries such as toothpaste, lotion or deodorant
Men’s socks
Please see the attached flyer for donation pick-up and drop-off details.
Thank you in advance for your support,

[CFL Inside] Why Parent Outreach?

Parent Outreach workshops help parents better understand their impact as their
child’s first and most influential teacher.

Workshop strategies help parents improve their family’s financial health.
Finally, a roadmap to plot a career path is supported.
Workshops are challenging, but not difficult. Each session is interactive and inclusive.

Parents who have enrolled their children in an early learning program have goals for their family’s future. Our services help them devise strategies to become successful.

Our greatest service is to help parents understand their power and to develop a
sense of community. 


Learn what they do!



Folks are Talking: RCADD is Building Connections

This past month RCADD has provided off-site autism training to a parent support group at the Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital, as well as to staff at Mujeres Latinas en Accion. Here’s what they had to say about our training:

“Thank you so much again for coming out to speak with our families. I wish more of our families would have made it, but I know the mothers that were able to be there really appreciated it. I also am

excited to continue to send folks your way to benefit from all that you guys offer!” – Emily Mehta, LCSW at Developmental & Behavioral Pediatrics at Lurie Children’s Hospital. 

“I was very pleased to see the significant participation we had from our staff. In addition, the presen- tation was clear, fluid, and very dynamic. The information and examples you presented were educational and consistent in the sense they helped to understand not only what is autism in its definition and

diagnosis, but also, the roll caregivers and educators have to help children develop skills to gain control

and independence of their own lives. I personally enjoy the materials you provided us with. They were very graphic, complete, and well elaborated. Thank you for the samples and references!” – Shatna Osorno, Director of Parent Support Group at Mujeres Latinas en Accion.

RCADD looks forward to finding more ways in which we can work with both organizations.


Submitted by Angela Duffy

Source: Inside and Out September 2018

National Center for Families Learning (NCFL) Conference

CFL was in attendance at the National Center for Families Learning (NCFL) Conference in Fort Lauderdale, FL.

RCADD, Senior Autism Specialist, Angela Duffy presented on:
“Not so Puzzling: Autism & Social Narratives”.
She was joined by our Assistant Director of Literacy Research, Briana Davis & Associate Director of CFL, Ruby Camacho.


Polly Smith (right), COABE Public Policy Chair, and Alaska Governor Walker at a local event at the Alaska Literacy Program.


The intent of a nationally recognized week of concentrated events, activities, and media is to bring recognition to the field of adult and family literacy. It is our opportunity to highlight the value of the work we do and the people we serve. It gives us a reason to showcase our programs with policy and decision makers. We get to advocate!

At the national level you can join us for COABE on Capitol Hill Day, September 27. We are encouraging teams of an adult education provider and a student to join. If you are interested, please click here.

At the state level, invite your district representatives to your program. Include those from the districts where your students live.

At the local level invite your assemblyperson, the mayor, judges, and other people with whom you and your students might interact at the policy or decision making level.  At the program level honor your students, volunteers, and staff with special recognition through an event or a thank you.

Include the media and let the invitees know you have asked the media to come.

For all levels use the Educate and Elevate contact button here to easily send your invitation and material about your program and activities to your representatives at all levels. Use the Educate and Elevate toolkit for press releases, facts, and talking points. In your invitation tell the guest what you would like them to do. It is always a good idea to give them an assignment – talk to the students about an issue, meet with the citizenship classes and practice the interview questions, read a book or story. Prepare your students for the meeting. Include who is coming, why, what will you want to tell them? Always follow up with a thank you. You can watch our short webinar on the value of local level outreach here.

Additionally, we have launched a new award for advocacy, aimed at recognizing advocacy at the local level. The winner will receive a $2,000 stipend plus registration paid to attend COABE 2019! More details will be shared in our September update. 

Contact advocacy@coabe.org with questions.