Volunteers’ Week, run by NCVO, is taking place from 1-7 June 2015 and is an annual celebration of the fantastic contribution millions of volunteers make across the UK.
Local reading charity ABC to Read have been working with volunteers for over 10 years to mentor youngsters who are struggling with their reading. Reading is a core skill that defines future prospects and the support that ABC to Read volunteer mentors provide for the children they work with has resulted in tangible improvements in the children’s attitudes towards reading.
In the charity’s annual statistics for 2013/2014, they reported a remarkable 97% improvement in reading confidence with the primary school children they work with. Among other figures, the ABC to Read reports an outstanding 99% improvement in general self-confidence and a 97% improvement in children’s attitude towards reading.
Importantly, the report also indicates that 98% of the children surveyed whose communication with adults was deemed to be an issue, demonstrated an improvement in this area.
Reading mentor, Jenny Coney, said: “To see a child emerge from the constraints of struggling to read fluently and being able to have the time to guide them and encourage them to a level of reading which will, almost certainly, improve their life chances is frankly the best feeling in the world and certainly a privilege!”
The primary school children selected to work with an ABC to Read mentor are identified by the schools as those children who are struggling with their reading and would benefit most from one-to-one support. Just over 50% of the children that the charity surveyed are eligible for free school meals.
An ABC to Read trustee said: “I love reading and to be given the chance to help someone else love reading is an opportunity to introduce them to a world of imagination for life. ABC to Read make it so easy to do that with their volunteer scheme.”
ABC to Read is actively looking for new schools and volunteers to benefit from the scheme. For more information or to book onto the next training course, please visit www.abctoread.org.uk or email firstname.lastname@example.org