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Bendigo, Victoria

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Become a Literacy Champion today

May 17, 2018

In Greater Bendigo, in children attending their first year of school: 

  • 12% are at risk in terms of their communication skills, and

  • 8% are at risk with their language and literacy skills.



The Communities for Children (C4C) and Parents for Change Literacy Champions supports community members to help with improving language and literacy development in the early years. Literacy Champions are trained and resourced to gain the:

  • confidence,

  • knowledge, and

  • skills to support community awareness of the importance of early childhood literacy and language development.





Why do we have literacy champions?


When a parents wants advice about their child’s development they will nearly always turn to another parent for help. This includes their child’s literacy and language skills.


Indeed, parent’s talk to each other before seeking professional help or advice.



The ‘Literacy Champions’ initiative understands that parents, carers, grandparents and community members play a critical role in supporting families and are often the first to hear and respond to another parent or carers concerns.


Therefore, we need to support community members to help others who are concerned about their child’s literacy and language development.


Who are literacy champions?


People of all ages and backgrounds are becoming Literacy Champions!!


There are currently 50 C4C Literacy Champions in Bendigo. But we always need more. 


Perhaps it could be you.




Importance of an early start


The most important time for early language and literacy development is from birth to three years of age.


The benefits of early language and literacy development include:

  1. improved educational outcomes,

  2. ability to develop strong relationships,

  3. making better health choices, and

  4. gaining better employment opportunities in the future.





How does the community benefit from Literacy Champions?


Literacy Champion’s: 

  • bring people together,

  • raise awareness about the importance of language and literacy in the early years,

  • build local skills and knowledge,

  • build connections with each other, and

  • take action to help create healthier communities.


Call to action


C4C wants to train 100 “Literacy Champions” in Greater Bendigo by the end of 2018


Are you interested in?

  • Brain and language development for children aged 0-5years

  • Tips on teaching interactive reading with children

  • Supporting families to access services to help children and parents where there are concerns about a child’ literacy and language development.

  • Promoting literacy and language in the early years


What commitment are required?


We understand that people volunteer for many different reasons and that their time is valuable.


People interested start by taking part in a training workshop, and then discuss future opportunities to undertake training that is designed around their needs.


Each Literacy Champions decides for themselves how much time they can dedicate to their role.


Watch Narelle from Bendigo's own Sam the Story Tram show how much fun it can be to teach your children a love of books and reading.





How to get in touch


If you would like more information on this initiative please contact:

Gabby Barrett

C4C Language & Literacy Worker (Bendigo Health)

E. gbarrett@bendigohealth.org.au

P. 5454 8396     

M. 0419 599 708





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