In 2007, I incorporated The Josie Odum Morris Literacy Project Inc. (JOMLP), a non-profit organization dedicated to equipping children and adults with the necessary literacy skills to achieve their full potential. Our goal is to create innovative programs that increase literacy skills in children and adults who live in Inkster.
According to the U.S. Department of Education one in five American adults are functionally illiterate. According to the Detroit Literacy Coalition, 18 percent of Michigan’s population is functionally illiterate. Even more alarming, a national study shows that 38 percent of the adults who live in Inkster are functionally illiterate.Unfortunately, most adults who struggle in their reading are ashamed and do not seek help to become self-sufficient.
I have a personal stake in this organization. When I was a young girl, I struggled in my reading. However, someone saw my potential and worked to help me improve my reading skills. Today, I am a published poet, motivational speaker, and I currently attend Wayne State University in Detroit, Michigan, where I am pursuing a Bachelor’s degree in print journalism. My life is a testimony to how much a child can overcome when people care enough to help.