50th Anniversary Bash!

LW Events
October 13, 2017

We’re celebrating 50 years of dedicated service at our Anniversary Bash! Join us November 15th for delicious food provided by Black Betty’s Bistro, remarks from U.S. Senator Angus King and LearningWorks alum Liz Leddy, and an exhibition of photographs from our 50 Stories Project.

Teyonda Hall

50 StoriesEnglish Language + LiteracyStaff
October 02, 2017

Teyonda was our English Language + Literacy Director from 2011-2017. She was equally at home in the board room presenting, in the classroom teaching adult English Language Learners, and in the elementary school hallways, where students referred to her affectionately as “Miss T.”

Constant Kabuyenge

50 StoriesEnglish Language + LiteracyStaff
September 26, 2017

Constant Kabuyenge, an immigrant from Burundi, began working with other new Mainers by volunteering as an assistant teacher, and then lead teacher, in LearningWorks’ English Language + Literacy program. He was inspired by how courageously students were fighting to learn English without complaining about their similar fates.

Grace Van Etten

50 StoriesYouth Building Alternatives
September 06, 2017

After just nine months in our Youth Building Alternatives program, Grace graduated from high school, enrolled at Southern Maine Community College, and is pursuing a career in early childhood education.

PJ Sanguedolce

50 StoriesService Works
September 14, 2017

Since participating in our Service Works program, PJ’s days in the corrections system are behind him. He remains connected to his community, is currently working, and hopes to start a new job in construction.

Karla Salamanca

50 StoriesAIMS HIGH AmeriCorpsStaff
September 20, 2017

When Karla Salamanca graduated from Portland High School in 2016, she knew she wanted to attend college, but she decided to take a gap year to learn more about herself. She became an AmeriCorps member and joined the LearningWorks team.

Susan Abt

50 StoriesLW Supporter
September 01, 2017

Susan Abt is one of the many individual donors who make our free services for the community possible. “It imbues me with a feeling of relief to know that there is support available for young people who may not have succeeded in the education system or who have had run-ins with the law,” she says.

Missouri Alice Williams

50 StoriesLearningWorks AfterSchool
September 24, 2017

When Missouri was a kindergartner at Reiche Elementary, she participated in a LearningWorks summer Story Camp for six weeks. She struggled with comprehension, but being able to participate in one of our free literacy programs helped her get the best possible start in school.

David Tucker and Sebastian

50 StoriesLearningWorks AfterSchoolVolunteer
September 01, 2017

Texas Instruments employee David Tucker volunteers in our LearningWorks Afterschool (LWAS) program two afternoons each month. “I am privileged to help young students begin to reveal their potential as creative problem solvers,” he says.

Emily Thielmann

50 StoriesAIMS HIGH AmeriCorpsStaff
September 06, 2017

West End resident Emily Thielmann started her career at LearningWorks as an AmeriCorps VISTA member in the summer of 2009, coordinating volunteers and starting a mentoring program for adult English Language Leaners and Youth Building Alternatives students.

Andy Meyer

50 StoriesVolunteer
September 09, 2017

“LearningWorks plays a key role in finding and training volunteers like me and matching us up with students like Fatima who we can help,” says Andy Meyer, Residential Program Manager at Efficiency Maine. “Thanks to LearningWorks, I have found meaningful volunteer work, and Fatima has been able to advance her career.”

Joe Dubail

50 StoriesHigh School DropoutsYouth Building Alternatives
September 15, 2017

Joe Dubail, a current student in our Youth Building Alternatives program, is making the most of opportunities that eluded him in high school. “I stopped going to school when I was a senior. I was not motivated because I was having a difficult time in class, and I didn’t have goals for my future.” 

Arnaud-Davy Mambanza

50 StoriesEnglish Language + Literacy
September 16, 2017

Arnaud arrived from Congo after being forced to separate from his wife and children due to political unrest. Despite having degrees in both chemistry and petroleum engineering, Arnaud is currently unable to work in Maine. Through our English Language + Literacy Program, he is gaining proficiency in hopes of reuniting his family and re-establishing his career.

Derek Pierce

50 StoriesService Works
September 13, 2017

Derek Pierce is the principal of Casco Bay High School. His commitment to innovative, inclusive, and student centered learning have been a perfect match for our Service Works program, which gives kids in trouble at school a chance to reflect on their mistakes and make amends.

Grace Wiley

50 StoriesHigh School DropoutsYouth Building Alternatives
September 10, 2017

“If not for YBA, I would probably be at home doing nothing with my life,” says Grace Wiley, a current student in LearningWorks’ Youth Building Alternatives Program. A talented artist, Grace has a painting in exhibit at Regional High School Art Show at Casco Bay Artisans Fine Art Gallery in Portland.

Othniel Emelo

50 StoriesEnglish Language + Literacy
September 07, 2017

Othniel became a student in our English Language & Literacy Program in September 2016, shortly after arriving in Portland from the Democratic Republic of Congo.  His uncle told him that there was a place nearby where he could learn English for free, and since then, Othniel has dedicated himself to becoming proficient in speaking and comprehending English.

Liz Leddy

50 StoriesHigh School DropoutsYouth Building Alternatives
September 09, 2017

Liz Leddy’s resume is impressive. She’s a two time national Golden Gloves Champion; owner of her own hair styling business, and a personal trainer. Back in the mid-1990s, this kind of success and stability was something that seemed far beyond Liz’s reach.  After dropping out of high school, Liz found herself homeless. She struggled with […]

CTN News Interview on Youth Building Alternatives

LW in the NewsYouth Building Alternatives
April 22, 2015

Soni Waterman, Director of Youth Building Alternatives, was joined by two students who describe their experience at LearningWorks.

Wilfreid Plalum

50 StoriesYouth Building Alternatives
June 16, 2017

Over twenty years ago, Wilfreid Plalum found himself in the right place at the right time. He was 20 years old, and had just arrived in Maine with his family from South Sudan. “I was playing soccer with some friends across the street from LearningWorks, when two staff people stopped over and informed us of a new program at LearningWorks called Youth Building Alternatives.”

Donna Galluzo

50 StoriesThe Board
July 18, 2017

Donna Galluzzo was a LearningWorks board member from 1999 to 2006 and significantly shaped who we are today. 

“LearningWorks awarded grants for after-school programs in Portland and Biddeford.”

LearningWorks AfterSchoolLW in the News
June 10, 2017

PORTLAND PRESS HERALD: LearningWorks has received grants totaling nearly $1.5 million over three years to support after-school and summer learning programs in Portland and Biddeford.

“Portland organization celebrates 50 years of helping those on the margins.”

LW in the News
May 17, 2017

FORECASTER: LearningWorks, which started out as a grassroots neighborhood advocacy group 50 years ago, has grown into an organization dedicated to helping young people on the margins reach their full potential.