We Promote Economic Literacy and Stability For All Through Reading, Writing, and Education.

One Woman
One Legacy
For Literacy

Mary Walker Foundation

Our Mission

Our Mission is to help alleviate poverty for all Chattanooga Citizens and help create economic stability through literacy training and educational activites.

Our Vision

To measurably increase literacy and journalistic training over the next three years and then strategically manage its outcomes to promote poverty relief.

Our Focus Areas & Impact

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Reading & Writing Camps

Helping those students that are slow achievers and/or are below grade level though a partnership with Lexia Learning Systems.

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Community Awareness

Mobilizing Churches to help support literacy efforts & economic stability for One Chattanooga through Summer Empowerment Camps

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Family Crisis Support

We have specially-trained advocates who support victims and survivors through crisis situations and work with them for as long as they need, even after the crises has been resolved.

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Continuation of Education

Monitoring, Mentoring & Maintaining investments in Chattanooga College & Vocational Students by awarding scholorships.

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Promoting Literacy & Journalism

Through our partnership with the Chattanooga News Chronicle, we foster journalism and literacy efforts.  Chattanooga News Chronicle is a 30-Year Old Newspaper.

Mary Walker Foundation

Who is Mary Walker?

Mary Walker Was Born In 1848 In Union Springs, Alabama, And Was Enslaved Until She Was 15 Years Old When The Emancipation Proclamation Was Signed In 1863. She Was Married And Had Her First Child By The Age Of 20. She Had Worked A Variety Of Occupations By The Time She Was 68, Including Cooking, Cleaning, Babysitting, And Selling Sandwiches To Earn Funds For Her Church. Walker And Her Family Then Relocated To Chattanooga, Tennessee, In 1917. By The Age Of 114, She Had Lost All Three Of Her Children As Well As Her Husband.

 

She Enlisted In The Chattanooga Area Literacy Movement (CALM) In 1963, Where She Was Taught By Helen Kelly, A Volunteer Teacher. She Learned To Read, Write, Add, And Subtract In A One-Hour Lesson Two Times A Week For More Than A Year, According To WRCB-TV.

 

Walker Received A Number Of Medals And Accolades For Her Endurance And Determination, Including The Key To Chattanooga. She Was Also Designated Chattanooga’s Ambassador Of Goodwill Twice And Was Certified As The Nation’s Oldest Student By The US Department Of Health, Education, And Welfare. In Addition, She Was Honoured By Two US Presidents, Dignitaries From Around The Country And Canada, And Even An Aircraft Flight In 1966. Following Her Death In 1969, The City Of Chattanooga Renamed Her Retirement Home And Built A Memorial To Honor Her Life.

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How To Give To The Mary Walker Foundation

The Miracle of Literacy

Literacy is a miracle in many ways. It gives people the ability to learn and work on their own terms. Literacy has given many people the opportunity to fulfill their dreams and passions. People who had never learned to read found something in it that changed their lives for the better and made them more productive citizens. Literacy has led to knowledge, wisdom, global exploration, scientific discoveries, and so much more.