Poland: All Of Poland Reads To Kids
The broad objective of the All of Poland Reads to Kids Foundation is to create a culture that values reading, particularly reading to young children. In 2002, more than 150 villages, towns and cities participated in the Foundation’s first National Week of Reading to Children; by 2010, 2 500 municipalities were participating in the event, during which well-known figures in the arts, politics and local municipalities visit kindergartens, schools and libraries throughout the country and read to children. To reach an even broader public, the Foundation produced music videos, television advertisements and short films showing celebrities reading to their own children or to their fictional children from television shows and soap operas. As a measure of its success, the programme has been replicated in the Czech Republic (“Every Czech Reads to Kids”) and has been adapted into the “All of Europe Reads to Kids” programme.
The Foundation also supports libraries and, through its lobbying work, has also helped to win additional public funds for the nation’s libraries. It established a writing competition to encourage authors to produce high-quality children’s books, and launched reading programmes in kindergartens and schools to help parents become more adept at creating environments that are conducive to reading. In addition to conferences and workshops for parents, teachers and others, the Foundation and the Academy of Social Psychology in Warsaw launched a post-graduate course for teachers on “Reading as a Method of Development in Education”.
The Foundation also runs programmes targeted to specific groups or regions, such as one held in a prison that accommodates women and their young children, one that provides free reading materials to school, libraries and other cultural institutions in disadvantaged rural areas, and one that unites children from orphanages and seniors from third-age universities through reading.