“Be bold” were the inspirational words that Governor General Quentin Bryce once told Suzy Wilson, national finalist in the Local Hero Award for Australian of the Year.
Our Founder took these words to heart in her campaign to address illiteracy in remote Indigenous communities.
“We can and we should all do more”, Suzy says.
Suzy is an educator, owner of Riverbend Books & Teahouse, and started the Indigenous Literacy Project in 2004 when she heard about the appalling rates of illiteracy in remote communities.
The Indigenous Literacy Foundation originally ran as a project in partnership with The Fred Hollows Foundation (2007-2010). When FHF moved out of the field of literacy they encouraged and leant their support to the project to set up a Foundation to continue literacy programs.
In the past four years, the Indigenous Literacy Foundation has delivered over 100,000 new books to more than 230 remote communities. It has launched an early literacy book project called Book Buzz in four communities and in one of those, translated books into the local language. It has also, in many partnerships, funded and published over 30 community literacy projects.
In addition, the Foundation travels out to remote Indigenous schools with its team of ambassadors and last year visited the Tiwi Islands, Manyallaluk, Yakanarra, Warburton and Broken Hill.
The Indigenous Literacy Foundation works with the support of the Australian Book Industry and has raised nearly $2 million in the past three years without any major corporate or government support. Click here to make a donation.
To find out more see the Australian of the Year Awards Website and the Commonwealth Bank CAN Awards
* For interviews with Suzy Wilson please contact Karen Williams on (02) 96982884 or 04040 75924