As part of the ‘Let’s play for change’ campaign, IKEA Reading hosted local Berkshire charity ABC to Read in a reading event, inviting children and adults to read together with their collection of story books and soft toys. The IKEA store, which has only been open for 18 months, invited the charity to come and read with children in their store in an effort to boost enthusiasm for primary school reading.
The IKEA Foundation’s ‘Let’s play for change’ campaign is designed to raise awareness of the benefits of play for all – both children and adults – and to inspire them to have a playful everyday life. The campaign highlights that every child has a right to it under the UN conventions on the Rights of the Child. Customers and co-workers are encouraged to join in with the Let’s Play campaign in store to understand the importance of play. Using IKEA’s story books and collection of toys to help tell the story, ABC to Read brought playfulness to reading.
When children can play, they learn new skills, become more social and are better able to cope with stress. It is these values that the IKEA Foundation shares with ABC to Read who invest in the lives of children by developing their enthusiasm for and competency in reading.
The store setting was a new one for ABC to Read who usually work one-to-one with children in their primary schools. For schools signed up with the charity, ABC to Read assign volunteer mentors to work with the children whom the schools identify as struggling most with their reading. This model is achieving excellent results with the charity’s most recent results reporting a 99% improvement in children’s attitudes to reading, a 98% improvement in reading accuracy and a 96% improvement in reading comprehension.
Marcia Rowlinson, ABC to Read Chief Operating and Development Officer, said: “Reading is so integral to the life of a child and we were very pleased to accept IKEA’s invitation to highlight this important skill in the everyday life of youngsters. It was a great day to promote a great message.”