Portage CALPs - 2020 Council of the Federation Literacy Award recipients!

September 9, 2020

Portage College is honored to receive the 2020 Council of the Federation Literacy Award for its Community Adult Learning Program (CALP), recognizing outstanding achievement, innovative practice, and excellence in literacy.

The Portage College CALP creates community-based informal and personal learning opportunities for adults in rural Alberta and indigenous communities. Working with other community organizations, these CALPs allow adults to identify and learn the skills they need to improve their quality of life. Sites are run by experienced educators who provide welcoming and safe services for all types and levels of learners.

“I came to the CALP program in September 2019 to learn spelling for my logbooks. I am a truck driver and if you misspell in your logbook you get a fine. I wanted better spelling for my job,” wrote by a learner and residential school survivor from one of our First Nation’s CALPs. “Today I am reading a lot better, I can read the newspaper and signs around town…I hope to be back in the classroom soon to learn more about reading and writing.”

In addition to Portage’s CALP program’s award, Carmen Murphy is also being recognized individually for her excellence in running the Bonnyville CALP. Carmen’s program has helped many Bonnyville residents gain the skills to find employment or pursue further training, and her effective model has drawn attention from CALPs across the province looking to emulate her program.

“I’d like to offer my deepest congratulations to Portage College, and to Carmen Murphy for her exceptional work in Bonnyville. Programs like this, which provide flexible learning environments, raise awareness and create cultures of learning, are vital to our communities. Ensuring all Albertans have the foundational skills they need to find fulfilling jobs, support their families and contribute to their communities is crucial as Alberta moves forward with recovery,” said Demetrios Nicolaides, Minister of Advanced Education.

“This program provides access to pathways of learning that may not exist for some people in the communities. We are happy to help provide service to those in need of resources for lifelong learning,” said Nancy Broadbent, President and CEO of Portage College.

She added congratulations are due to all those who have contributed to the ongoing success of the CALPs.

“We want to thank those communities that have written letters of support and those that have been involved with providing foundational learning opportunities for the communities of the regions we serve,” she said.

CALPs operated by Portage College:

- Bonnyville
- Cold Lake First Nation
- Elk Point
- Frog Lake First Nation
- Kehewin Cree Nation
- St. Paul
- Whitefish (Goodfish) Lake First Nation #128

CALPs in Portage College service region:

- Buffalo Lake Métis Settlement
- Cold Lake Community Learning Centre
- Community Association for Lasting Success (Vegreville)
- Elizabeth Métis Settlement
- Fishing Lake Métis Settlement
- Kikino Métis Settlement
- Lac La Biche Regional Awasisak and Family Development Circle Association
- Lac La Biche Canadian Native Friendship Centre Association
- Lac La Biche Community Learning
- Smoky Lake County Community Learning Council
- VegMin Learning Society (Vegreville)

Media Inquiries:
Jaime Davies, Corporate Communications Manager 
780-623-5581 or email

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