Chris? literary help changes kids? lives
CHRIS Tanner doesn't just help kids improve their literacy skills.
As founder of the Gladstone Tutorial Centre MULTI-LIT (Making Up for Lost Time In Literature) program, Mr Tanner has invested both time and money into the program.
While his community work goes mostly unnoticed, it's the parents and students who have benefited from his generous spirit who seek to thank him.
Jenny Bishop's daughter, Lisa, was part of the first intake of students to the Gladstone Tutorial Centre's MULTI-LIT program, and like most parents she was concerned about her daughter participating in the trial during her first year of high school.
'We'd never heard about MULTILIT before and we didn't even get introduced to Chris when we went to the first meeting ... it wasn't until much later when we'd learnt bits of pieces of information that we began to realise who we had to thank for changing our kids' lives,' she said.
Mr Tanner said the idea for the program originally came from listening to a radio interview with Uniting Church Reverend Bill Crews in NSW, who had decided to teach homeless youths literacy skills.
After gaining support from Macquarie University in NSW Mr Tanner, with help from Rev Crews and Education Queensland, established the program in Gladstone in 2001.
Since then, almost 100 students from across the Gladstone region have benefited from the program, which costs about $65,000 to run each year, of which around $12,000 comes from community donations.
'I've been working for 52 years and I started out as a simple sailor after leaving school at 16 ? this was my opportunity to give something back to the community,' Mr Tanner said.