Book Swap makes big difference

LOCAL families can now access free children’s books from the Gawler & District College Children’s Centre, after it received some help to raise literacy levels among the community’s young children.

Not-for-profit organisation Raising Literacy Australia has donated a free community library to the centre as part of its fundraising campaign, The Little Big Book Swap.

Speaking at a morning tea fundraising event held at the centre last Wednesday, Raising Literacy Australia community programs director Janet Leske said regular reading was greatly important for children up to the age of five.

“(Literacy) is probably the number one thing that develops children into young intelligent community-orientated people,” she said.

“They have to have reading to be able to succeed and reach their potential in life – if they don’t, they’re in big trouble.”

Ms Leske said children’s centres were key to supporting all families in the community, and the team at Gawler & District College Children’s Centre did a great job in supporting both the local community and Raising Literacy Australia.

Children’s Centre community development co-ordinator Kim Wright said the centre’s been very fortunate to receive the free community library.

“With that, and the stand and everything (containing) about 300 books, we’re able to pass (the books) on to the community,” she said.

“We’re okay if they don’t come back, because once they’re out there, they’re being used, and that’s really important.

“We keep track as much as we can, but it’s one of those things that if they don’t come back, that’s okay because parents have got a book…in their house to read, which is the most important thing.”

Along with The Little Big Book Swap, Raising Literacy Australia provides universal and targeted programs to provide families of all backgrounds with the tools to read to their children.

This includes handing out a number of different packs and bags to children at various stages of pre-schooling

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Matteo Gagliardi joined The Bunyip in August 2016 with almost two years experience in regional print media, having previously worked at a community newspaper in Swan Hill, Victoria. Covering politics, local government and crime, Matteo likes to sink his teeth into hard-hitting issues, but also enjoys spending time getting to know the Gawler community. Matteo also has a passion for science, agriculture and the environment, and has previously worked as a media officer at the Australian Science Media Centre.

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