The need for adult literacy programs in northern British Columbia is growing, but the funding is not.

Rodney Porter with the Ministry of Advanced Education, Skills and Training says the number of proposals for the program is continuing to increase, but the annual funding has stayed the same.

Since 2014, Porter says that the number of communities in B.C. applying to for funding has gone up from 83 to 101.

“I have been doing this for a long time and this funding shrinks every year and every year were asked to do more with less money,” adds Ells.

She says the need to support programs like the Houston Link to learning is only growing.

Literacy programs help adults with reading, writing, math, and computer skills needed for everyday life.

The province gave $299,180 to Coast Mountain College (CMTN) to support 13 programs in the Northwest, five of which are in the Bulkley Valley.

Curtesy of Rodney Porter with the Ministry of Advanced Education, Skills and Training

In The Bulkley Valley, programs in Houston, Smithers, Hazleton have all seen a decrease in funding in the past four years.

The exception being The Storytellers’ Foundation In Hazleton which has stayed consistent for the past four years.

According to the Ministry of Advanced Education, Skills and Training, more than 700,000 adults in B.C. have significant challenges with literacy.

“It gets a little tiresome when every year we have to go yay were getting this money again when were 20 per cent down on our funding and expected to do the same thing… its gets a little frustrating,” says Ells.