Volunteers sought for ‘Mischief Makers’ summer reading campaign

Lowestoft library and record office. Picture: Nick Butcher

Lowestoft library and record office. Picture: Nick Butcher - Credit: Nick Butcher

It is a fun and engaging way of encouraging children to keep reading during the summer holidays.

Beccles Library. Picture: James Carr

Beccles Library. Picture: James Carr - Credit: Archant

And volunteers are now being sought for this year's Summer Reading Challenge – as Suffolk Libraries appeal for help with the popular campaign.

The Summer Reading Challenge takes place every year during the summer holidays, with the number of children taking part in Suffolk having increased year on year since 2013.

With the theme of 'Mischief Makers' this year – inspired by the much-loved children's title The Beano, which celebrates its 80th anniversary in 2018 – the campaign is produced by the Reading Agency and delivered by libraries across the country.

Bungay Library. Picture: Nick Butcher

Bungay Library. Picture: Nick Butcher - Credit: Nick Butcher

The Summer Reading Challenge will be running in all of Suffolk's 44 libraries this year, with 8,362 children having taken part in the challenge in the county in 2017 – the highest ever. This was the fifth consecutive year this number had increased and children taking part last year also read more than 85,000 books with nearly 2,300 registering for their first library card.

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Krystal Vittles, Suffolk Libraries development manager and children's lead, said: 'The Summer Reading Challenge can make a difference to a child's literacy skills at an important time in their development and we've been thrilled to see more and more children taking part every year.

'The role of volunteers is vital and we're always keen to get people on board as early as we can to make the campaign as successful as possible. It's a great opportunity to get some experience working with children, it's very rewarding and is something people of all ages can get involved with.'

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The idea is for young children to read six library books of their choice and collect special stickers and other incentives along the way. Visiting the library to choose and talk about books is an important part of the campaign and volunteers are always needed to help out. You just need to be able to come to the library for an hour or two every week during the holidays.

Children will be able to sign up for the summer reading challenge just before the summer holidays, with further details available in libraries. Anyone interested in volunteering is encouraged to get in touch as soon as possible – by contacting your local library or register online via www.suffolklibraries.co.uk/src

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