What Is The Importance Of Teaching Numeracy Skills In The Poorest Communities Of Asia?

Numeracy skills are often lacking in cultures where education is not valued. For example, over 250 million women in Asia are illiterate in both math and reading.1 Many women long to learn, but the resources are unavailable to them. When adults are unable to do basic math, they are often taken advantage of in the market or in housing contracts. This makes an already financially strained family go even further into debt.

GFA World teaches adult literacy classes in Asia, releasing women and men from the confinement of illiteracy. They learn how to read, write and do basic math. This knowledge qualifies them for higher-paying jobs and sometimes they are even trained in starting their own vocation or business. With these new skills, they are able to realize a better future for their family. Often, literacy and education are the keys to breaking the cycle of poverty.

There are multiple positive effects of numeracy. Some are:

• Ability to understand a budget and how to live within it.

• Ability to critically think through decisions and solve problems.

• Increased participation in society, for instance understanding contracts, agreements, prices in the marketplace and counting money.

GFA missionaries teach literacy classes to adults in the poorest communities of Asia. Each student receives a workbook, and the class gradually works through the lessons, learning the basics of reading, writing and math. They learn about numbers and how they work together in mathematical principles. They learn how these principles impact their lives. After a few months of learning together, participants are literate! It is life-changing when they realize they can now apply for higher-paying jobs, read to their kids, understand money in the market and more.

In 2018, 61,880 women learned to read and write through GFA’s literacy classes.2 Will you join us in supporting these life-changing classes for women in Asia? Lives are being changed because of generous donors like you.

Learn more about numeracy definition

1 “Over 250 Million Women in Asia are Illiterate” GFA World. Accessed 16 February 2022. https://www.gfa.org/resource/detail/over-250-million-women-asia-are-illiterate.
2 “Women Missionaries.” GFA World. Accessed 16 February 2022. https://www.gfa.org/women/literacy.