Skip to main content

The Literacy Council


Bonnie Potts, Executive Director
Jenni Edwards, Marketing Manager
Anna Norton, Senior Programs Manager 


Mailing Address:

P.O. Box 2320
Highlands, NC 28741

Phone Number:


Fax Number:


Email Address: 

Website Address:

Office Hours:

9:00am to 5:00pm Monday through Friday


675 S 4th Street
Highlands, NC 28741

Take NC-107 S to Cashiers (about 21 miles).
In Cashiers, turn right onto US-64/US-64W to Highlands (about 10 miles). Cross through downtown Highlands, and continue on 4th Street as it turns to the right. The Literacy Council will be ~3 blocks ahead, on the right.

Agency Description:

Nearly 51% of Macon County’s adult populace is estimated to have functionally low levels of literacy. Functional illiteracy is the inability to read, write, or speak at a proficiency level that allows an adult to complete basic tasks such as reading a newspaper, finding a street on a map, or filling out a job application or medical information form.

Parents who are unable to read well cannot help their children with homework, understand safety instructions for medications and consumer products, or read a book aloud. In addition, the children of illiterate adults are more than twice as likely as their peers to grow up illiterate, repeating the cycle of despair.

The mission of The Literacy Council is to enrich lives and expand the knowledge of children, adults and families in Macon and Jackson Counties through diverse educational programs that advance literacy in its many forms and to promote lifelong learning, which results in an informed and empowered community.


We will provide training and resources for volunteers to become acquainted and comfortable with the Literacy Council, its programs, and its protocol.

Time Commitment:

Time commitments vary based on the volunteer task:

• In School Tutors: four hours each week (time depends on school).
• After-School Enrichment: two afternoon hours per day at The Literacy Council.
• ESL tutoring: three hours per day on Tuesdays and/or Wednesdays at The Literacy Council.
• Literacy One-on-One: two afternoon hours for two days during the week (location is determined between tutor and parent though The Literacy Council provides space).
• Internships and Residencies are also offered on an individual basis in the following areas of study: Marketing, Journalism, English, ESL, Education, Non-profit administration, and much more. Please contact us if you are interested in an internship or residency.

Skills, Experience, and Special Requirements:

Skills, experience, and special requirements vary among the volunteer tasks:
• Field of study in all subjects of education; science, technology, engineering, English arts, mathematics, world languages, etc. 
• ESL tutoring, bilingual in any language: Spanish, French, Italian, Russian, Chinese, Japanese, etc.
• For all volunteers working with children, a background check is required and people skills are a must.

Volunteer Involvement:

By volunteering at The Literacy Council, WCU students will receive professional experience pertaining to their area of study, professional guidance and mentoring, self-rewarding opportunities and much more! The Literacy Council is committed to the Western North Carolina community. WCU students are the next leaders of our generation and The Literacy Council offers professional opportunities which benefit their future careers and lifelong goals. Volunteers at The Literacy Council are changing lives... one mind at a time!

Office of Web Services