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Introduction

The NWT Literacy Council is a not-for-profit organization that promotes and supports literacy development in all the official languages of the Northwest Territories.

  • We work with communities to help develop local literacy projects.

  • We provide literacy resources to people.

  • We develop literacy teaching & learning materials.

  • We promote the use of all official languages.

  • We research literacy issues.

  • We encourage reading and writing in all official languages at all ages.

Literacy levels are an issue in the north—more than 50% of NWT residents do not have the literacy skills they need for everyday living. Literacy and health are closely linked. When people think about the links between them, they tend to think about the difficulty people may have reading instructions on medicines. But the connections between literacy and health go well beyond a person’s ability to read. A recent report on the health of Canadians shows that people with low literacy skills are more likely than those with higher literacy skills to be unemployed, poorer, have poorer health and die earlier1.

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1 Health Canada, Towards a Healthy Future: Second Report on the Health of Canadians

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