Sunday, August 14, 2016

Supporting development and access through literacy #WLIC2016

Liveblogging from the IFLA World Library and Information Congress in Columbus, USA, in a session on libraries taking action for the UN 20130 goals, Annie Everall (Authors Aloud UK, United Kingdom) talked about Literacy Matters: Supporting Access and Development through Literacy and Reading Initiatives in Libraries
She talked about 2 library initiatives: Big Book Bash for Children in Care (UK) and Better beginnings/ Reparation through Reading in Western Australia. The latter is a collaborative approach to adult literacy and family history. It is a family literacy programme, using established networks of libraries, coommunity health etc. to work with families at risk. It is a joint initiative with WA Corrective Services and prison-based services. They learn ways of improving young children's literacy and this also changes parent behaviours as the prisoners' confidence in reading improving and they can enjoy sharing and supporting their children's reading. Some research undertaken by Edith Cowan University showed improvement in reading, books in the home etc. There was a paper about this at IFLA in 2014
Big Book Bash for Children in Care targets a group that has lower literacy levels (those in local authority care or in foster homes). The initiative is in Derbyshire, UK, where there are 620 children in care. It is a one day reading festival for children and their carers (plus birth children of foster carers). It is annual and the last one was the 13th book bash. They aim to promote enjoyment in reading, and bring authors/artists in contact with children in care and to raise awareness of library services. The steering group for the event has representatives of many stakeholders including children and parents. The day includes a reading relay, free books, meetings with authors etc. In 2016 there were 500 children, 40% said they visit libraries more, over 90% said they are sharing and reading books more.They are on Twitter @BigBookBash
Photo by Sheila Webber: registration, WLIC 2016

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