Education ministry launching reading campaigns

The Ministry of Education and has organised ‘Give a Book’ and ‘Drop Everything and Read’ campaigns to encourage reading and literacy nationwide for Education Month 2013, currently underway.

A press release from the ministry said that on September 9, the ministry is inviting all Guyanese throughout the 10 administrative regions to participate in the ‘Give a Book’ campaign, which is intended to raise awareness of the importance of reading, especially among young people.  Guyanese are being encouraged to give a book to someone else and to persuade them to read it.

Members of the private sector will also be joining the ministry in the distribution of books on Monday.

According to the release, the Ministry of Education will be erecting tents in front of the main administrative offices at 21 and at 68 Brickdam, Stabroek, and will be distributing free books to everyone present.  The ministry will also be using a mobile unit to distribute books around the country, and will be placing tents around Georgetown – at the Stabroek Market Square, outside of Parliament Buildings and in the compound of the National Library – where persons can go and uplift one free book each, compliments of the ministry.

The ministry is also encouraging all Guyanese to take part in the “Drop Everything and Read” campaign by stopping whatever they are doing on Monday, September 9, at 11am, to read any text, regardless of content or format, for 15 minutes.

The release said that the media corps is on board to support the ministry’s campaign.  To help make this innovative initiative a success, several media houses/television stations will pause their regular programming for 15 minutes to broadcast text material from 11am.

Minister of Education Priya Manickchand was quoted as saying, “We at the ministry are happy to have the support of the media in assisting us in advancing our literacy drive. We have asked that television stations interrupt their regular programming to show a variety of scrolling texts which viewers are encouraged to read for 15 minutes. And in the case of radio, a number of creative methods have been decided upon so as to significantly highlight the importance of reading. In some instances some children will be reading a variety of texts on air… generally though I am pleased with the response of our local media operatives, television and radio stations and I commend them for committing to showcasing their corporate social responsibility.”

The ministry urges that even after these campaigns would have been concluded, that all citizens continue to support reading and literacy by continuing to encourage and support each other to read a wide range of texts for enjoyment. The ministry recognises that developing as a reader is linked to positive attitudes and experiences.

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