Your article, "Catching Up on Their Reading" (Nov. 15), outlining the problems of illiteracy in our community, did an outstanding job of profiling typical cases of people caught in this terrible trap.
However, there is another side of the equation that is equally troubling but not as well publicized. This is the plight of many of our foreign-born neighbors, who not only can't read but face the additional difficulty of being in a strange country, unable to communicate at the most basic level (because) they can't speak English.
Just as there is help for illiterate Americans, there is help for our non-English speaking friends. California Literacy serves these people through local nonprofit groups staffed by dedicated volunteers. The need for more tutors is constant--the more tutors we have, the more adult students we can teach.
Tutor training workshops are held regularly. No knowledge of the students' native languages is necessary: The entire course is taught in English. It should be kept in mind that helping people learn our language benefits us as well as them. Communication is indeed the answer to many of our problems.
NANCY HALL WARSTON