Wexford People

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Zurich staff help kids take the time to read


Annie Furlong with Denise Kent from Zurich.

Annie Furlong with Denise Kent from Zurich.

Annie Furlong with Denise Kent from Zurich.

There were magical tales a-plenty in Wexford Library on Wednesday as children from St John of God NS in the Faythe gathered for a special visit as part of the 'Time to Read' programme.

Run by Business in the Community Ireland, the programme partnered local employees from Zurich in Wexford with students in second class to help increase the kids' enjoyment of books and improve fluency and comprehension when reading.

Regional co-ordinator with Business in the Community Leonard Kelly said that the day aimed to introduce children to the library and show them the enjoyment you can get from a good book.

'The library visit introduces the children to the local library,' he said.

'The idea is for them all to have fun in the library and see that they are not intimidating, quiet places but somewhere for them to come and enjoy themselves and take out books. Many of the children, while having a keen interest in books, may not have used the library before and this is a wonderful way to introduce them. I hope that this will be the beginning of a life-long adventure for the children as they develop a love of reading and the library'

During the visit, the children were shown how to check out books and how the librarian can help them find what they need.

Zurich co-ordinator Eoin Murphy said that they were delighted to take part in the project for a third year.

'As a volunteer last year I saw first-hand how well the children developed in terms of their enjoyment of reading but also in terms of their confidence and communication,' he said.

'It was also a very enjoyable experience for us as Zurich volunteers - it allowed us to give back to our local community in a meaningful and significant way by supporting the children. We are thankful to our employer for affording us time off to read to the young students and also to staff at the Faythe for welcoming us back.'

Faythe School principal Liam Turner thanked the volunteers for their time and noted that one-to-one reading time is proven to provide long-term literacy gains for the children involved.

Wexford People