This morning, our Foundation's ambassadors Josh Pyke and Justine Clarke launched our 2018 Great Book Swap program at Bourke Street Public School in Sydney. The event was brought to life by kindergarten to year 2 students singing along to 'Words Make the World Go Around' with Justine and Josh, followed by a 'Playschool-style' reading of 'No Way Yirrikipayi!' and a roaring countdown to officially launch the program.
Amongst the students, were special guests from publishing, State Library NSW, Reconcilation Australia, and MP Jenny Leong, amongst other dedicated supporters from the book industry and Aborginal education.
The Great Book Swap is our major fundraising campaign run in schools, libraries and businesses across Australia, and this year we aim to engage over 30,000 students in the national campaign.
“The Great Book Swap is a win-win: it helps raise much needed funds to raise literacy levels in remote communities, while also celebrating literacy and books in your school or organisation. Last year we had over 20,000 students around the country participating in the Great Book Swap program. This year we’re aiming to register 1000 schools and organisations to host a swap on Indigenous Literacy Day, our national celebration of Indigenous literacy, stories, languages and culture,” says Karen Williams, Executive Director of the ILF.
In 2018 we aim to raise $300,000 from the Great Book Swap to buy 30,000 new books for remote Indigenous communities. In our lifetime, we have delivered over 260,000 free and culturally appropriate books to more than 250 remote Indigenous communities and service organisations across Australia. Resources are an essential first step in building a culture of literacy in communities where there are often no books in homes, no bookshops and where only 1 in 10 children from very remote NT communities can read.
"Having the ability to choose is a powerful thing, and to me, the work ILF do in raising literacy levels in Indigenous communities, is about introducing choice to people. Kids and adults who can read, can choose to pursue further education, pursue better job opportunities, stay more up to date with the world around them, or simply enjoy the brilliant escape that reading can offer at the end of a stressful day. Words, books and the language of music have been incredibly important to me, and I love that ILF might bring those gifts and those choices to others." Josh Pyke, ILF Ambassador
Registrations are open to schools, libraries, univeristies, businesses and organisations across Australia. Register HERE.
Schools that register by 30 April go into the chance to win an ambassador visit in 2019.