Zonta gives the gift of books

Bunbury Herald

Mothers and their newborns were given books in celebration of the United Nations’ International Literacy Day last week.

The Zonta Club of Bunbury gave books to 35 mothers at St John of God and Bunbury hospitals in recognition of the day on September 8.

Through giving books to new mothers, the club hopes to promote the importance of parents reading to their children to improve literacy levels.

Zonta Bunbury’s Literacy Week coordinator, Amanda Whittle said the group had been donating books since 1995.

This year the group gave each of the mothers a book explaining the importance of reading and a children’s book.

“It is a little bit of a pleasant surprise when we visit them,” she said.

“We tell the mothers that their baby was born in Literacy Week when we give them the books.

“One book is by Mem Fox and is for the mothers explaining the theory behind the importance of reading to babies. The other book is for the new baby.”

Mrs Whittle said the club encouraged mothers to read to their children.

“Zonta Club supports Literacy Week because it aligns closely with what we work for,” she said.

“We support advancing the state of women though various means.

“Although we hand out books, this year’s theme of literacy for the 21st century acknowledges that there are many new forms of literacy required.

“We sometimes take for granted the skill of reading and understanding the written word but there are still people in our community with very basic skills.

“There are nearly 800 million adults in the world who lack even basic literacy skills, according to UNESCO.”

The books are paid for through fundraising events throughout the year. More information on these events can be found on the Zonta Club of Bunbury Facebook page.

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