At least 50% of people with experience of homelessness are estimated to have weak or non-existent literacy [1]. Those needing help commonly face significant barriers to participation in formal education services. Regular attendance at classes is less likely for men and women with long-term poor health, inadequate life skills, difficulties with benefits claims, or housing problems.  It is also not unusual for individuals who are ashamed of their poor reading and writing skills to be unwilling to face exposure within a formal setting [2].

A number of third sector organisations run literacy services that can cater for the issues facing people with these vulnerabilities. But tutors often work in educational isolation, without the kind of support network available to professionals in schools, colleges or universities. And, importantly, the available provision does not meet the vast need.


Literacy 100 was founded in recognition of these challenges. With a focus on the homelessness and associated sectors, our objectives are:

         To provide a forum for practitioners delivering literacy education, so that they may share               and promote good practice.

         To support organisations and donors who wish to initiate new literacy services, by                       offering both practical advice and reference to research.

{1] Jones K (2018). An exploration of third sector employment and skills provision

[2] Olisa, J, Patterson, J & Wright, F (2010) Turning the Key: Portraits of low literacy amongst people with experience of homelessness. London. Thames Reach.  Available from: