Free over-the-phone tuition for adults with literacy or numeracy difficulties

Online courses are also available on the National Adult Literacy Agency website

The National Adult Literacy Agency (Nala) is offering free tuition over the phone for adults who have literacy or numeracy difficulties.

The charity, which believes around one in six adults have difficulty with reading, has tutors available for phone tuition and for online courses on its website.

As part of the programme, tutors are available to help people with reading, writing and spelling; filling in forms such as social welfare forms; understanding health information and understanding financial information, for example applying for mortgage relief.

The instructors are also able to help adults learn how to best help kids with their homework while they’re off school during the coronavirus pandemic.


The courses are free and participants choose what they want to learn and when they want to learn it, Nala said.

A tutor will call the individual at a pre-arranged time that is convenient for the participant, and the programme normally includes one call per week for up to 30 minutes.

"We know it's a very difficult time at the moment, especially for the many people in Ireland who struggle with reading, writing and using everyday technology," said Dr Inez Bailey, chief executive of Nala.

“That’s why we’re making our distance learning service, with tutors on the phone, available for anyone who wants help with reading and writing, for example understanding health information, helping kids with school work or filling out forms for social welfare benefit.”

She added: “We can also help with basic digital support like accessing the kids’ homework online or your classes online, as we know it can be a little daunting.”

To avail of the service, you can call Nala on Freephone 1800 20 20 65, or Text LEARN to 50050 for a call-back with more information. The phone is answered Monday to Friday between 9.30am and 5pm and all texts will be replied to within two days, the charity added.

Shauna Bowers

Shauna Bowers

Shauna Bowers is Health Correspondent of The Irish Times