Castries Lions and Leos Observe International Literacy Day

Image - Lions and some of the Early Readers Club members.
Lions and some of the Early Readers Club members.

PRESS RELEASE – LIONS International, through the Reading Action Programme, has challenged Lions and Leos to organize service projects and activities that underscore the importance of reading.

On Friday, September 8, as we observed International Literacy Day, we were mindful of the theme chosen by the United Nations – “Literacy in a Digital World”.

Just as knowledge, skills and competencies evolve in the digital world, so does what it means to be literate. In order to close the literacy skills gap and reduce inequalities, this year the United Nations will highlight the challenges and opportunities in promoting literacy in the digital world where, despite progress, a large group of adults and children still lack basic literacy skills.

In observance of International Literacy Day, and to help bridge that divide, the Lions and Leos of Castries in collaboration with the Castries Central Library launched the Early Readers Club on September 8. The Chairperson, Lion Miranda Austin, highlighted the objectives as follows:

• To help foster support in the love for reading with children ranging between the ages 3 years to 9 years old in story time which increases early literacy skills.
• To increase children’s ability to read in their early stages of life.
• To increase the early childhood resources available to the children and, in turn, increasing and developing their reading skills
• To empower facilitators to have the teaching skills needed to create meaningful, collaborative and challenging learning opportunities so that our children can thrive in today’s world
• For community and family involvement, fostering full collaboration which will benefit all, resulting in a win-win outcome.

Dale St. Juste, Executive Director of the Special Education Unit of the Ministry of Education, pledged the support of the Ministry for this collaboration and noted that children are motivated to read with regular exposure to print and seeing adults read. He added that in addition to exposure to print, children should be encouraged to develop speaking abilities as children who have been encouraged to be good speakers become good readers.

The Librarian, Melissa Clairmont, expressed how gratified she was with this collaboration as it not only emphasized the need to encourage literacy at an early age but serves to highlight the Library and the services that it offers to the community.

The Early Readers Club caters for children between the ages of 3 years to 9 years. The programme commences on the first Saturday in October and will run every first and third Saturday for one hour from 10:00 a.m. at the Castries Central Library.

Principals, teachers and parents of students in School District 2 are encouraged to register their students in the Early Readers Club.

The Education and Youth Committees of the Lions and Leos Clubs of Castries express thanks to the many people who contributed to making the launch of the Early Readers Club the success that it was.

If you are service-minded and want to give back to community come, join a Lions or Leo club. We are on social media. Contact us at castrieslionsclub3b@yahoo.com and leoclubofcastries@yahoo.com.

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