Reading can change lives

As we approach the 50th celebration of International Literacy Day on Thursday 8 September, we are reminded of the importance of reading when it comes to ensuring children have the skills to reach their full potential. Yet last year alone over 63,000 children left primary school unable to read to the expected level. Low literacy skills can have a devastating impact on the lives of individuals and our communities, and are estimated to cost the UK economy £81billion every year.

At Beanstalk, we believe that life is better when everyone can read well and express themselves with confidence. That’s why we recruit and train volunteer reading helpers to go into a local primary school and provide one-to-one support to a child struggling with their reading.

Our volunteers change lives – without them, thousands of children would still be struggling to read, and facing all the problems associated with low literacy levels. But we need more reading helpers if we’re to be able to offer this support to all those who need it.

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So, as the new school year starts, we’re recruiting a new class of Beanstalk reading helpers. Visit or call 020 7729 4087 to find out more about our work, sign up as a reading helper if we work in your area or find out about the other ways in which you can support us.

Ginny Lunn.

Chief Executive of Beanstalk,