Changing the lives of disadvantaged children
25% of children left primary school last year unable to read properly. This increases to 40% for children from disadvantaged backgrounds. A love of reading can change their lives.
Giving children brand-new books
Through a series of fun events, we give disadvantaged children the opportunity to choose books that they can take home and keep. These are often the first books they have ever owned.
The programme has been running for over 20 years. In recent years, we have been awarded the the 2018 Charity Times Award 2018 for Corporate Local Involvement for our partnership with British Land and the Corporate Engagement Bronze Award 2017 for our partnership with WHSmith.
As part of the programme, schools and other partner organisations also receive training, ongoing support and membership of the National Literacy Trust. There is no cost to the schools, teachers or children for taking part and, wherever possible, expenses (including travel) are covered.
We know that reading for enjoyment is vital to a child’s development and future success in life. Children who enjoy reading are three times more likely to read above the level expected for their age than children who don’t enjoy reading. As well as this, children who are good readers are three times more likely to have higher mental wellbeing than their peers with below expected reading skills.
The Young Readers Programme has given over 1.2 million books to over 411,000 children. Our most recent evaluation of the Young Readers Programme showed that the programme supports young readers’:
9 in 10 teachers told us that pupils were proud of having books of their own.
More than twice as many children would now describe themselves as good readers in comparison to before the programme.
9 in 10 teachers told us that the programme had a positive impact on reading for their most reluctant readers.
92% of teachers felt confident in supporting their reluctant readers and 99% felt confident to support readers to choose the right books.
More than twice as many children enjoy reading very much as a result of taking part in the programme.
One participating teacher said: “What an amazing programme provided by the National Literacy Trust. I have seen a great uptake in the joy of reading since we joined the Young Readers Programme.”
Young Readers Programme coordinator zoneSupporting resources, activities and book lists for schools taking part in the Young Readers Programme.Learn more
Young Readers Programme: booklistsCelebrate reading and inspire children with our themed book lists.Learn more
Young Readers Story ClubThis collection of short films feature some of our favourite storytellers, poets, writers and illustrators telling exciting stories.Watch now
The Young Readers Programme works with state schools across the UK throughout the academic year. It is a funded programme which works largely by recruiting schools in target areas, however, we welcome expressions of interest from schools at any point during the year. If you would like to let us know you’re interested, or you have any questions you’d like to ask us, we’d love to hear from you!
If you are interested in funding the Young Readers Programme or collaborating with us we would also love to hear from you.
Please send all enquiries to: email@example.com
Success storyView detailsWith over 10 years experience of our Young Readers Programme, St Luke's C of E Primary School celebrates another brilliant year. Success storyView detailsSt Mary's Bryanston Square School in London took part in our Young Readers Programme this year and saw positive changes in children's attitude towards reading Success storyView detailsSimms Cross Primary School in Widnes recently took part in our Young Readers Programme, in partnership with WHSmith.