Until 10 years ago there was very little printed material on Palm Island in Northern Queensland, not even any street signs. But now, since our Foundation has been supplying books to the Palm Island Community Company, toddlers and pre-schoolers are building important vocabulary and reading skills.
Our Foundation has been supplying books to the Palm Island Community Company (PICC) for just a year, but already they are having an impact. Even in that short time, PICC staff have noted significant changes.
A book corner has been set up at the playgroup run by PICC and, says Project Officer Ray Armit, “The kids really love going in there and looking at the books.”
In fact, the toddlers now seek out the books, which Ray says wasn’t happening before.
“They are becoming sponges for books, not just for oral stories.”
At the end of last year, some of the books from our Book Supply program were distributed so families could take them home. More books were presented to kids at the community celebrations on National Aboriginal and Islander Children’s Day on Friday 4 August this year.
Until 10 years ago there was very little printed material on Palm Island, not even any street signs. But now, these toddlers and pre-schoolers are building important vocabulary and reading skills.
“The books have been excellent in giving children and their parents access to the printed word.”
The books for older readers are used in the Night Café, which provides an evening meal and a lift home for kids aged 8 and over. The coordinator has “really embraced having the books and encourages the kids to read”.
“As soon as books are available, the kids have an option,” Ray explains. “If books are there, they’ll pick them up and read them.”
The adult books, housed at the Children and Family Centre, have proved so popular that many parents ask if they can take them home, promising to bring them back.
“A sincere thanks to the Foundation for the books we receive. When people support you like that, you get more energy. It’s really appreciated.”