Volunteers wanted for Wigan reading project

A charity aimed at improving adult literacy is appealing for help to establish a new group in Wigan.

By Sian Jones
Friday, 21st January 2022, 9:59 am
Jay Blades
Jay Blades

And the timing couldn’t be more appropriate as a famous face from television reveals his own battles with books.

Repair Shop presenter Jay Blades’ journey to learn belatedly how to read at the age of 51 with the help of the charity will be the subject of a new BBC documentary next week.

Read Easy UK is a registered charity that supports volunteers to set up groups in their own communities.

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Groups provide free, confidential, one-to-one support for adults.

Coaching can be face to face or remote.

Volunteer coaches are carefully selected and trained by Read Easy UK’s trainers, who are all adult literacy professionals.

North West regional adviser for Read Easy, Karen Wood, said: “It is thought that eight per cent of adults in the borough struggle to read in a way that impacts their daily life.

“This is over 16,500 people in the Wigan borough!

“We also believe that this is also a multi-generational problem, so by tackling it now they can help the future generation of adults.

“So you can see there are plenty of reasons for our wanting to set up a Read Easy group in Wigan borough.”

Read Easy is urging people to become volunteers to make this happen.

Needed are:

- A pioneer whose role is to raise awareness with the aim of forming a volunteer committee to coordinate activities in the area. The role of a pioneer is to network with organisations to establish interest and support, publicise the project and to find other volunteers to form a team.

- A management team to coordinate the work of the Read Easy group. Roles include team leader, secretary, treasurer, literacy specialist, PR and a reading co-ordinator to support the work of the reading coaches on the ground once the group is up and running.

- And reading coaches to work with the adults learning to read.

Full training is given to all and there is a huge range of resources to support volunteers as well as a Regional Adviser on hand to support volunteers and groups.

To discuss further contact Karen Wood, regional adviser, North West, Read Easy UK on 07763 442924 or email [email protected] to discuss how you could help them.

Alternatively visit their website to hear more about their work hereJay Blades: Learning To Read At 51 airs on BBC One on January 26 at 9pm.

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