What was your favorite childhood book?

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Thinking back to your childhood, what was your stand out stories, books or authors? Roald Dahl, Charlottes Web, Harry Potter?

There was something so magical about reading a book when you were little. Your imagination allowed you to go wild and you become absolutely engrossed in what you were reading.

Even when asked this question around the office people’s faces lit up thinking back on those times and remembering how amazing those stories were.

We all know that reading isn’t just for leisure when you are a child, it can also affect what you will be like when you grow up and in today’s world the number of children reading is dwindling.

For some young children reading isn’t a pleasure, it is a chore which they find extremely difficult. In Ireland, on average, one in ten children have literacy difficulties and in some disadvantaged schools, this number increases significantly to almost one in three pupils.

Parents involvement can influence these statistics as it is essential for them to provide support for the children but in some cases even the parents themselves may find issues with their own literacy skills.

So, that is why back in 2010 the Business in the Community Ireland developed the ‘Time to Read’ programme. This provided 2nd class children (roughly 7-9-year-olds) with the opportunity to receive reading support from business volunteers. The aim of this programme was to increase the enjoyment and confidence in young kids reading and also encouraged self-discovery.

For any company who wishes to make an impact on Irish education or even just to make a difference in their local community then this employee engagement programme is the perfect opportunity.

How the ‘Time to Read’ programme works is, they are now offering an additional 18 opportunities for companies to come on board this September. When you sign up they will train 10-12 volunteers who will go to schools once a week for 10 weeks to assist the children for about one hour.

This idea has been running successfully for the past four years and already has 32 great companies involved including ESB, Friends First, Elavon, Lionbridge, Irish Life, Gas Networks Ireland and KPMG as well as many more.

Show support on social networks by using the hashtags #Time2Read and #favechildhoodbook

If you would like to get involved and sign up then contact Germaine Noonan on 086 816 0448 or gnoonan@bitc.ie 

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