Three prominent human rights organizations announced plans Friday to establish a literacy program for young adults in South Los Angeles.
The "Principle of Alphabet Literacy System" (PALS) program--sponsored by local chapters of the National Urban League, the American Jewish Committee and the National Conference of Christians and Jews--will enable 400 students a year to upgrade their literacy and job training skills, spokesmen for the groups said.
"We felt it was important to do something that would give hope to youth who are unemployed and illiterate," said Bob Jones, executive director of the National Conference of Christians and Jews. "This way, we divert them from drugs and crime."
Officials from the groups said the program would open after they had raised seed money, which they expect to come from corporate and philanthropic institutions. They said it would take $150,000 a year to run PALS. IBM has already donated $100,000 in computer equipment to the project, the spokesmen said.