Reading is an ability many of us take for granted. But for people like Charlotte, that reminds us of the importance.
“I’m dyslexic and born dyslexic and when I was diagnosed, I was somewhere around six or seven and they sent me to Galveston and anyway. They put me in special ed and I went through a lot of abuse and a lot of ‘you cants’ and a lot of bad things,” said Charlotte Roderick, student at the Permian Basin Literacy Center.
Things like that stripped her of the knowledge to read because no one believed she could.
“I was told ‘you can’t, you can’t’. And then one day I was told I could go to Midland College. I’m an artist, I’m a sculptor and I paint, so I can do a lot of things. But no one can see them or get them because without that education of reading and having your GED you’re just stuck. You’re just looking in a glass through the world, but you can’t get through it.,” said Roderick.
Sculpting is only one of Charlotte’s many talents.
“I was a jeweler by trade. I’ve done some acting, that was fun. I’ve done some shoot-out westerns you know, that was my younger days,” said Roderick.
She can even sing, and never skips an opportunity to do so.
“I can do so much but the second you tell someone you can’t read they treat you so different,” said Roderick.
Charlotte refuses to give up her dream to get a GED, but in order to do so, first things first, she has to learn to read at a much higher level.
“I’m slow and this is the way I’m doing it today, but later it’ll be more. One day in the summer, frog was not feeling well.. see it’s slow,” said Roderick.
Charlotte came to the Permian Basin Literacy Center only knowing how to write her name, but after a short two months of a temporary tutor’s time, she’s now considered a second grade reading level. Only problem now.. her special tutor had to move out of town.
“At 69 I don’t have that another three years to wait for somebody to walk through the door. I wanna be able to three years from now, hopefully be able to get my GED. To be able to give and make a living and not just exist,” said Roderick.
If you'd like to help out Charlotte- please contact The Adult Permian Basin Literacy Center:
Address: 1709 W Wall St, Midland, TX 79701
Phone: (432) 682-9693