Learning & Loving Education Center Director Christa Hanson is pictured in a 2018 file photo at the nonprofit organization on Church Street.

The Learning & Loving Education Center—a Morgan Hill nonprofit that has provided educational services and support for immigrant women and their children for the last 27 years—has closed its doors due to the Covid-19 pandemic and related challenges.

The center’s board of directors decided to close in late June, according to spokeswoman Cindy Reeves. The Learning & Loving Education Center thus will not reopen to adult students and preschool children in August as planned.

“Although the Center is closing, we are still committed to the belief that education is essential in creating systemic change for vulnerable populations in order to overcome the obstacles of poverty, discrimination and illiteracy,” Learning & Loving Center Board President Jim Yinger said.

The center was established in 1994 to teach skills, foster hope and provide direction to adult immigrant women and their children who live in low- and extremely low-income neighborhoods of Morgan Hill and South County. Annually, more than 170 women representing 17 countries have enrolled in the Learning & Loving Center’s (LLEC) literacy programs.

Classes include lessons from pre-literacy to Hi-SET or GED, according to a press release sent by Reeves July 20.

Over the past three years, 40 women have graduated from the GED program at Learning & Loving Education Center. More than 4,000 women have received services at the center, before moving to Gavilan College.

“These women have become examples and advocates of learning and community involvement for their own families and for other immigrant women,” the press release says.

The closure of the nonprofit, located at 16890 Church Street, was directly related to the Covid-19 pandemic, which has resulted in similar closures of organizations and businesses throughout the nation. The July 20 press release adds that the center’s board of trustees has spent the last few months trying to determine how to provide services while abiding by social distancing and personal protection guidelines—challenges that proved too difficult to overcome.

In 2018, the LLEC was named the chamber of commerce Nonprofit of the Year.

LLEC Director Christa Hanson and the board of directors continue to thank the hundreds of individuals, businesses, organizations and foundations that have supported the facility over the years.

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