Literacy group uses ABC Skills Hub to support independent learning

Literacy Council York-Simcoe (LCYS) was formed in 1984 by a group of passionate volunteers who were dedicated to helping those experiencing difficulty in reading, writing and working with numbers.

Since then, they have been delivering a variety of skills upgrading programs, such as digital skills workshops, soft skills training and employability skills workshops to more than 300 adult students per year.

Recently, LCYS has been leveraging the UP Skills for Work program through the ABC Skills Hub as part of its overall program offering. UP Skills for Work helps learners develop key employability and life skills including motivation, time management and adaptability. It is offered through free workbooks and workshops, and through the ABC Skills Hub, an online learning portal that offers asynchronous, at-home delivery of ABC Life Literacy Canada’s adult literacy programs.

“We’ve always offered employability and soft skills programming, but what we like about UP Skills for Work is that it’s easy to understand, so it’s a good fit for our learners,” says Brittany Horlings, Programs and Marketing Assistant at LCYS.

Horlings says each learner who comes into LCYS has a custom learning path depending on their needs. The UP Skills for Work program is self-paced and learners receive courses to complete, as well as regular check-ins with practitioners. Most of the program is done independently online however there is some in-person training as well.

“We find that when learners are able to work on this program on their own time it’s very beneficial because many of them might have unique schedules and can’t attend in-person classes.”

The ABC Skills Hub is a free and fully turn-key online learning platform for adults, making it an ideal fit for some LCYS learners. With the ABC Skills Hub, learners are able to complete online courses at their own pace, save their work in progress, and download course content and helpful reminders of what they’ve learned.

The ABC Skills Hub also includes teacher and organization portals, where teachers can set up virtual classrooms for learners, and where organizations can keep track of multiple teachers and groups of learners across a variety of courses.

“I really like the organization portal because I can see how many courses people have done, their progression and whether or not course have been completed,” says Horlings. “It’s very easy to use. I can even see the last time a user has logged in and can send them reminders. It keeps them motivated.”

Horlings says the most popular course for their learners on the ABC Skills Hub is Communication. Most learners in the program complete one to two courses, but some also work on courses outside of UP Skills for Work. The ABC Skills Hub offers courses on money skills, digital skills, health skills, civic skills, and cultural skills, in addition to work skills.

“We can see the stats on the backend and it’s interesting to see the most popular courses outside of the employability skills. It allows us to see what they’re interested in.”

For more information on the ABC Skills Hub, visit It’s completely free to use, and anyone can set up an account.