Join Us On Facebook

Kokua Services Logo



LEAD 2016 Graduation, The Longhouse at The Evergreen State College

For over 25 years, Kokua has provided support, encouragement and empowerment to individuals with disabilities to live full and meaningful lives in the Olympia area. Opportunities for friendship, continuing education, and creative expression make life rich and meaningful. LEAD (Literacy and Education for Adults with Disabilities) was born from this belief and the belief that all people matter. We believe that learning opens doors into a larger world of learning, friendship, commitment, academia and personal growth. LEAD has proven to be a powerful, transformative experience for both learners and tutors.

LEAD, now preparing for its 7th year, is a partnership with The Evergreen State College and St. Martin’s University. We match college students with adults with disabilities for one-on-one weekly tutoring sessions on campus. The interests and learning are as varied as the individuals who participate and this year includes reading, math, counting money, computer skills, German language and history, and learning to play the piano. LEAD started as a program for individuals who receive supported living services from Kokua, however, we have slowly opened our free program to those outside of the Kokua community. There is tremendous potential for growth and our plan is to continue to raise money and recruit tutors in order to meet the needs of the many adult learners in the community who have expressed a desire to participate. We currently provide our volunteer tutors professional training and support and many of our tutors have been a part of the program for multiple sessions. Many of our former tutors have have gone on to careers in social services, medicine, teaching and non-profit work.The LEAD program was originally launched by Kokua and The Center for Community Based Learning and Action (CCBLA) at The Evergreen State College in January 2011. Kokua expanded the program to St. Martin’s University in 2015. We will continue to work with both of those institutions, and, as we look to grow, we are also seeking other volunteers to work as tutors in the local public libraries. Tutors will commit to participate from January – June 2017.

The time commitment is as follows:

• Initial training* – two 2-hour training sessions in January 2017.
• Additional tutor training sessions* – one or two 90 minute sessions.
• Weekly tutoring sessions -Learners and tutors work together for a minimum of one hour each week. Prep time is required for each session.
• Weekly communication with program coordinator and written weekly assessments.
• Two social gatherings (at the beginning and end of the year) for tutors and learners – not mandatory but strongly encouraged to cultivate a sense of community.
• Graduation Ceremony * June 6, 2017 (2hrs).

* Held on The Evergreen State College campus

Kokua believes that inclusion benefits and enriches our entire community. Diversity breeds tolerance, understanding, and friendship. Programs such as LEAD foster strong community connections that make inclusion less of an ideal and more of a reality.
For more information about becoming a LEAD tutor, please contact:
Randi Miller, Community Programs Coordinator
360-705-4665 ext. 120