Doncaster Literacy Champions hit the ground running

06 Feb 2020
Literacy Champions

Doncaster Stories has recruited 34 Literacy Champions to help deliver campaign work in the local community.

The campaign launched last October, and boosts literacy levels in the town through targeting areas where we can have the greatest impact. Since then, we have given out almost 10,000 books, ran several campaign initiatives such as Doncaster 100 Reads, a golden token scheme, as well as competitions, assemblies, and school events.

Doncaster Stories is a community driven campaign which is why we want to include as many role models from the local area as possible. Literacy Champions can be anyone from the local community (students, parents, child minders, sports coaches etc.) who want to inspire a generation of children and make a difference in their area.

We recently held a training session at Shaw Wood Primary School with parents from diverse backgrounds and professions. The training gives an overview of the importance of literacy and how it can empower young people, as well as covering common barriers and misnomers around reading. We also show examples of what our Literacy Champions have done elsewhere, and encourage volunteers to use their own interests and connections to help shape their involvement in our campaign.

Jane Pendlebury, one of the first Literacy Champions to be recruited in Doncaster, recently organised an event for primary school children at Doncaster College. Jane invited a class of Y5 pupils from St Peter’s Primary School for an engaging literacy event with guest spots for the library service and a local story teller and illustrator, Phil Sheppard.

We also have Literacy Champions planning collaborative work with Family Hubs, organising World Book Day celebrations in March, working with us on literacy trails, as well as organising book swaps and reading areas in shops and waiting rooms.

If you're interested in volunteering for our campaign, please email for for more information.

“I’m really pleased that so many local people want to get involved in Doncaster Stories. It’s important that we’re able to recruit volunteers early in the campaign so that we can build our presence on the ground. It’s great that we’re able to work closely with so many local people, and I’m really excited to see the work of our Literacy Champions.”

Mike Leyland, Project Manager for Doncaster Stories