Reading for pleasure is the single biggest indicator of a childs future success, more than family circumstance, beyond their parents educational backgrounds or income. Reading for pleasure has been proven to raise literacy levels which shows the immense power that books have on our education and in turn, path to success.
Today is World Literacy Day. This day is celebrated every year on the 8th of September in order to highlight the significance of literacy for individuals, communities and society in general. It also aims to combat the problems surrounding education and provide quality teaching for all.
Being able to read and write is essential for human development, it provides individuals with the skills that empower them to improve their standard of living and get their voices heard. Despite this, according to a recent consensus, there are still close to 775 million adults who lack the minimum education levels that are required to be considered literate. This is a stark reminder of the need for help within these societies.
Can you imagine attempting to navigate your way through modern society without the ability to read or write? This doesn’t mean the inability to enjoy a good book, it means being unable to communicate effectively or to get your voice heard. It means being unable to complete an education, get a good job or a competitive wage, it means widening the poverty gap and being incapable of escaping the vicious cycle.
The 8th of September was proclaimed World Literacy Day in 1966 and since then The United Nations has given themes that align with the current environment every year. They have ranged from things like ‘Literacy and Health’ ‘Literacy and Empowerment’, ‘Literacy and HIV’, ‘Literacy and Peace’. This year it will be ‘Literacy and Teaching in the Covid-19 Crisis and Beyond’.
Children have had their education disrupted this year on an unforeseen and unimaginable scale. Children across the world have been out of full time education for the majority of 2020 and therefore missed out on vital stages in their education.
There are ways you can get involved and help. Why not donate some of your old books to local schools, libraries, hospitals or prisons? You could even take them to your local book drop so they can find their way to a loving new home? If you can, perhaps you could sponsor a child or buy and donate a new book?
There are some wonderful charities you can support a few of which I have included below.
World Book Day – ‘World Book Day is a charity on a mission to give every child and young person a book of their very own. It’s also a celebration of authors, illustrators, books and most importantly it’s a celebration of reading’.
Read for Good – ‘Read for Good motivates children to read for fun because we know that loving reading changes lives.’
Book Aid International – ‘At Book Aid International we know that books change lives. We make books available to an estimated 19.5 million people in libraries, schools, universities, hospitals, refugee camps and prisons around the world.’
Better World Books – ‘Every book you drop off will be put to good use. Books are sold online to help raise funds for awesome non-profit literacy organisations changing the world through teaching kids, supporting families, building schools and filling libraries.