ONE in five Australian children are not meeting the international benchmark for reading, the Australian Literacy and Numeracy Foundation (ALNF) has revealed.
To combat this concerning statistic, BIG W, one of Australia’s most loved brands and has been part of families lives for over 40 years, is partnering with the Australian Literacy and Numeracy Foundation (ALNF) to extend the benefit of reading by delivering books and resources to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities and families in other marginalised communities.
ALNF is a national charity assisting people in our most marginalised communities to gain vital language, literacy and communication skills.
ALNF’s specialised and innovative programs address the needs of a diverse range of individuals and communities – specifically targeting First Nations, refugees, and other vulnerable Australians.
As one of Australia’s largest booksellers, BIG W is donating 1,000 backpacks, filled with back-to-school essentials and literacy packs to nine communities across Australia.
They will be gifted to families stretching from Palm Island (Queensland) to Warmun (Western Australia) and every State in between, giving children the confidence and tools, they need to head back to the classroom.
ALNF Board Member and Ambassador Mr Adam Goodes said the partnership couldn’t have come at a more important time and getting much-needed school resources and books into communities is a cause close to his heart.
“Our aim is to close the gap so that every Australian child is given every opportunity to succeed in school.
Additionally, ALNF, with the support of BIG W and Woolworths, will continue to run the Breakfast Library program, providing a daily breakfast and access to books for close to 500 students to fuel their minds and bodies for learning.
The program will initially support seven early learning centres, primary schools and Intensive English Centres and High Schools in Western Sydney for 24 weeks.
“With partners like BIG W, who share our values, we can help raise language and literacy standards in Australia.
“Together, we believe we can make a difference,” Mr Goodes said.
Managing Director of BIG W, Pejman Okhovat, said that we have a responsibility in Australian communities to give back to communities that need it most, particularly after the challenges of recent years.
“BIG W’s partnership with ALNF is one way for us to make a real difference for families who have limited access to resources and support to improve literacy outcomes.
To learn more about the ALNF and BIG W’s commitment to a brighter future for all Australians, visit https://www.bigw.com.au/community, and https://alnf.org/ .
Ryan Fritz started The Advocate in 2014 to provide not-for-profits and charities another media platform to tell their worthwhile hard news stories and opinion pieces effortlessly. In 2020, Ryan formed a team of volunteer journalists to help spread even more high-quality stories from the third sector. He also has over 10 years experience as a media and communications professional for not-for-profits and charities and currently works at Redkite, a childhood cancer charity.