News & Events

Immigrants in Bucks County

Vita’s Executive Director Linda Wolfson was interviewed for and quoted in the following article, which appeared in The Intelligencer.

April 5, 2017 –    The Intelligencer
By Peg Quann, staff writer

Agencies that help immigrants see that even those legally in the United States feel concern about Trump’s immigration plans.

The climate in Washington, D.C., regarding immigration has left many immigrants feeling uneasy about their status in the United States, even if they have come here legally and have proper documentation, say those in Bucks County who are trying to help them.  Read More

Immigration Attorney Presentation

Immigration attorney Wayne Nguyen with Vita Board President Betsy Arrison (left) and Vita’s Executive Director Linda Wolfson (right).

Doylestown, Pa. (March 27, 2017)   Vita hosted a presentation by Wayne Nguyen, an immigration attorney, who presented an overview of legal permanent residence status and current immigration enforcement and removal policies. Over 40 Vita staff and Board of Directors members attended the presentation, held at The Intelligencer in Doylestown.

Nguyen is with the Philadelphia immigration law firm of Surin & Griffin, P.C. He has extensive experience working with family-based as well as business-based immigration. He has defended clients in removal/deportation proceedings before the Executive Office for Immigration Review and has assisted in appeals at the Board of Immigration Appeals and Circuit Court levels. A first generation U.S. born son of Vietnamese refugees, Nguyen is a graduate of the Thomas R. Kline School of Law at Drexel University.

Vita Needs Your Vote

Vita is one of the ten finalists for The Intelligencer’s 2016 Good-Doer Award. To win the award, we need YOUR VOTE. You can show your support of Vita by voting every day from January 2-11at www.theintell.com/good-doers. The nonprofit organization with the highest number of votes will be the Good-Doer Organization of 2016. In addition to community bragging rights, the honor comes with an award and prize.
Read all about Vita in an article on Sunday, January 1, in The Intelligencer and at http://www.theintell.com/tabs/good-doers/. Let’s get out the vote!

Volunteer to Help Make a Difference

ESL Students
Decisions For Living (DFL) tutors work with inmates in the Bucks County Correctional Facilities, teaching a process that emphasizes self-awareness, personal responsibility, critical thinking, and goal setting. DFL provides inmates with tools to help them reintegrate more effectively into the community upon release.
Basic Literacy (ABE) tutors work with adults who want to improve their basic education: reading, writing and math skills. Individual and small group tutoring supports English speakers who are assessed at Beginning Literacy, Beginning ABE and Low Intermediate ABE levels. Tutors can choose to work with adults in the community or in the Bucks County Correctional Facility.
English as a Second Language (ESL) tutors work with adults for whom English is not their first language and who wish to improve their English proficiency. It is not necessary to speak another language. The ESL tutoring program is focused on small group instruction from beginning to advanced levels.
Click Here for more information about our volunteer programs.

Looking for a Unique and Rewarding Volunteer Experience?

Doylestown, PA (September 29, 2016) Vita Education Services is offering a Decisions For Living (DFL) tutor training course for volunteers interested in working with adults preparing to leave prison. DFL tutors work with clients in the Bucks County Correctional Facility in Doylestown teaching a logical five-step process that emphasizes self-awareness, personal responsibility, critical thinking, and goal setting. This unique decision-making process provides clients with tools to help them reintegrate more effectively into the community upon release.

The 15-hour volunteer tutor training will be held in Doylestown on six Thursday evenings beginning Nov.3. The training includes learning the DFL process and a tour of the Correctional Facility. No teaching experience is needed to tutor DFL; volunteers must be at least 21 years of age. Criminal record clearance is required.

Click Here for more information and the registration form.

Vita Receives Grant from The Philadelphia Foundation

logo_philadelphia_foundation1 Vita Education Services has received a $34,000 grant from the Walter E. Hering Fund #2 of The Philadelphia Foundation for general operational support. Announcement of the grant was made by Pedro A. Ramos, President and CEO of the Foundation.

Linda Wolfson, Vita’s Executive Director said, “The ongoing support of the Philadelphia Foundation is greatly appreciated by our students, staff, and board. Vita provides quality programs to the undereducated, unemployed, and underemployed to help them improve their lives and the lives of their families.”

One of America’s oldest community foundations (founded in 1918), The Philadelphia Foundation (TPF) is committed to improving the quality of life in Bucks, Chester, Delaware, Montgomery, and Philadelphia counties. A foundation and a public charity, TPF connects philanthropic resources to societal needs. TPF manages assets of approximately $370 million and more than 900 charitable funds established by its fund holders. It distributes about $25 million annually to nearly 1,000 nonprofits as grants and scholarships, and promotes great philanthropy and stronger nonprofits in service to community needs. To learn more, visit www.philafound.org

Vita Presents at National Conference

CEA Logo Linda Wolfson, Vita’s Executive Director, and Vita’s Curriculum and Training Specialist, Gail Huber, recently presented a workshop at the Correctional Education Association (CEA) International Leadership Forum in Marksville, Louisiana. CEA is a professional organization for educators in adult and juvenile corrections settings.

The topic of the presentation was “Teaching Decision Making in a Criminal Justice Setting.” Attendees included teachers and administrators from jails, prisons, probation departments and university faculty from around the country.

The workshop was based on Vita’s 45-year history of teaching its Decisions process to at-risk populations in a variety of criminal justice and community settings. These include incarcerated adults, probationers, teens, and adult basic education students. Vita has developed unique, copyrighted Decisions curriculum materials for each of these populations. Click Here for more information about these products.

A Unique Volunteer Experience

criminal-justice Doylestown, PA (October 9, 2015)  Vita Education Services is offering a Decisions For Living (DFL) tutor training course for volunteers interested in working with adults preparing to leave prison. DFL tutors work with clients in the Bucks County Correctional Facility in Doylestown teaching a logical five-step process that emphasizes self-awareness, personal responsibility, critical thinking, and goal setting. This unique decision-making process provides clients with tools to help them reintegrate more effectively into the community upon release.

The 15-hour volunteer tutor training will be held in Doylestown on six Thursday evenings beginning Oct. 29. The training includes learning the DFL process and a tour of the Correctional Facility. No teaching experience is needed to tutor DFL; volunteers must be at least 21 years of age. Criminal record clearance is required.

Click Here for more information and the registration form.

Developing Critical Thinking Skills

GH & LW Gaedited Atlanta, Georgia (Sept. 28, 2015) Vita’s Executive Director Linda Wolfson and Gail Huber, Vita’s Decisions Curriculum and Training Specialist, were invited to present a workshop at the Technical College System of Georgia’s Adult Education Fall Conference. The workshop, “Developing Critical Thinking Skills to Support Persistence,” was well received by attendees.

The workshop focused on teaching critical thinking skills to adult learners at risk of dropping out of adult education programs by using students’ own challenging situations. The new Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act recognizes critical thinking as an essential component of work preparation activities. Improvement of these skills benefits at-risk leaners transitioning to work or further education.

Participants were introduced to the Decisions process used by Vita in its literacy program to develop critical thinking skills needed to clarify goals, solve problems, and make decisions that benefits at-risk leaners transitioning to work or further education.

Vita has been teaching its Decisions process to at-risk populations for over forty years. Vita’s decision-making programs are Decisions For Living for incarcerated adults, Decisions For Action for adults in basic education settings, Decisions For Change for adults on probation or parole, and Decisions for Teens for at-risk teens. These unique copyrighted materials are now available for purchase on Vita’s website www.VitaEducation.org

Celebrating the Faces of Success

GED Student Kitty Johnson

GED Student Kitty Johnson

Doylestown, PA (August 31, 2015) Vita Education Services hosted a gathering of Vita students, tutors, and teachers from the Literacy Tutoring and GED program to recognize and honor volunteer and student achievements during the past academic year. Over 90 people attended the celebration held at Bensalem Library on August 8.

Mercedes Anderson, Director of Literacy & GED Programs, welcomed the crowd and set the theme for the event, which was a celebration of the faces of success. Attendees included students and their proud families and friends as well as Vita tutors, teachers, and staff. Mercedes honored the students, paying tribute to their courage, dedication, and hard work, noting the many challenges faced by adult learners.

Proud GED students hold their certificates of achievement. Eighty-four students advanced at least one educational level last year.

Proud GED students hold their certificates of achievement. Eighty-four students advanced at least one educational level last year.

GED student Kitty Johnson was the featured speaker. She reflected on her own experiences and expressed how proud she was of her decision to start the adult education program with Vita. “All of us here should be proud of ourselves for taking this step in empowering our future,” Kitty told the audience. She continued, “I am taking control of my future. I feel better about myself. I see unlimited possibilities. I keep saying to myself, ‘What do I want to be when I grow up?’ I will soon have a choice.”

Vita’s volunteer literacy tutors.

              Vita’s volunteer literacy tutors.

Kathy White, Vita’s Tutoring Program Coordinator, recognized Literacy Tutors who volunteer their time to work with students to help improve their reading, writing, and math skills and work toward getting their GED. She thanked them for the hours and hours of volunteer time, noting the accomplishments of their students that came as a result of the commitment and hard work of both tutors and students.

Vita Literacy Teachers

Vita Literacy Teachers

Vita’s teachers were recognized for their dedication and support in helping students achieve their goal. The crowd applauded the success of the students and the contributions made by teachers and tutors.