A children’s literacy charity is expanding its service into Westminster on the back of success in Hammersmith and Fulham.
Doorstep Library Network’s home reading support programme is aimed at young children living in disadvantaged areas and sees volunteers visit homes to read with children.
It currently helps just less than 400 kids a week in five estates in Hammersmith and Fulham , and when functioning at full capacity will help nearly 100 more in Westminster.
Since its launch in 2008, the home-reading support programme has helped thousands of children, aged between one and 11, living in Fulham Court, Clem Atlee, Bayonne, Old Oak and White City estates.
Doorstep director, Katie Bareham, said: “The volunteer-led home reading programme developed by Doorstep has proven so successful in Hammersmith and Fulham, that we are now offering our services north into Westminster.
“More children stand to benefit from individual reading sessions with our trained volunteers.
"By bringing books and the joy of reading directly into these homes, we’re breaking the link between poverty and illiteracy.
“We’re inspiring both children and parents to embrace reading and the life transforming effect it has.”
The charity is based in Dawes Road in Fulham , and its Westminster programme will run out of the Queen’s Park Children’s Centre on the Mozart Estate in northwest Westminster.
The area is in the top 30% most deprived in England for overall multiple deprivation and contains the highest proportion of Children Living in Income Deprived households in England.
According to a Save the Children report, four out of 10 children on free school meals are not able to read well by the age of 11.
A spokesman for the charity said: “More than 60 Doorstep Library volunteers have supported more than 350 children and their families this year.
“The aim is to instil a love of reading outside the classroom, to improve literacy, education and life chances.
"Primarily the charity wants to encourage children to love reading and to read for pleasure.
“Volunteers take books into homes and encourage pre-primary and primary school aged children to read with them and to them.
"More than 12,000 books have been borrowed and read through Doorstep this year alone.”
Anyone interested in volunteering should send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org or go to the charity's website .
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