On the 5th March the Minister for Children and Early Childhood Development, Maxine Morand, launched the Young Readers Program.
The key objectives of this State Government initiative are the delivery of children's books and reading support materials to improve early childhood literacy. The program has 3 components:
- A picture book for every 2 year old child through the Maternal & Child Health service
- A free "Rhyme Time" booklet and DVD, book bags and information on local libraries for families with 4 month old babies through the Maternal & Child Health Service and
- Professional development offered to early childhood professionals, librarians and maternal and child health nurses.
This project is being managed by the State Library of Victoria and is funded by the Department of Education and Early Childhood Development.
It will work in conjunction with the long running Bookaroo program that our library service has provided for a number of years. This too is promoted through Maternal & Child Health services and provides an opportunity for new parents to learn how to read to their babies and prepare them for literacy. On joining the library the baby is presented with a book. There are regular programs in the branches for babies and toddlers.
Let us know if you use these services and attend programs with your baby or toddler - we'd love to have your feedback.