Guest post: Grammy-nominated gospel singer Beverly Crawford shares her triumph over illiteracy

Beverly Crawford, famed Gospel singer, joins NCFL as a family literacy ambassador. Read Beverly’s post to learn why she is personally committed to NCFL and the family literacy cause.

The struggle that was most painful in my life was my challenge with reading. While I was able to learn the basic fundamentals to carry me through middle school, the real challenge occurred in high school. Because of my reading problems, I found myself struggling in every class by the end of my freshmen year. By my senior year, I graduated with average scores but with no hope that my future would include college.

In my teen years, my battle with illiteracy made me feel overwhelmed with hopelessness. I resorted to my first attempt of suicide by trying to stab myself, and just as I was aiming the knife to my body, my mother walked in the room. I understood my father’s strong teachings of the Bible, yet I suffered with bouts of depression. This depression triggered my second attempt of suicide, when I planned to overdose on a full bottle of pills. However, what I thought to be prescription drugs turned out to be simple water pills.

After that last attempt, I learned to love myself and teach other women self-love. I took on that victorious attitude I was always taught by my father, and, amazingly, God allowed me to develop and sharpen my skills in reading. My husband, Todd, and I started our own ministry in Florida, and now I go before God’s people with the confidence of knowing that He has equipped me with the skills necessary to lead them.

My personal struggle with literacy has made me a firm supporter of education. I understand that education promotes confidence and strong character because that is exactly what it has done in my life. That’s why I’m proud to announce that I have become an ambassador for NCFL and the cause of family literacy.

In the years to come, I hope to see our education system continue to grow and advance so our children can acquire the skills and information they need to be effective citizens in their communities. NCFL is taking the steps needed to make that hope a reality.