Books for Babies celebrated

Gina White (far right), President of the Southland Literacy Society gives Lee Pemberton and...
Gina White (far right), President of the Southland Literacy Society gives Lee Pemberton and Victoria Morton a book for their new daughter, Elsie Pemberton at Southland Hospital Maternity Ward
Over the last 22 years, it’s not only been babies delivered in Southland maternity units, but books too, thanks to the ‘Books for Babies’ programme.

The programmes is one of the Southland Literacy Association’s initiatives, and ensures all tamariki/children born in Southland receive a literacy pack containing a book almost immediately after birth together with information explaining how to read to a baby, and recommended book titles.

Convenor of the Books for Babies programme Daphne Lindsay says she’s delighted with the success of the programme and how long it’s been running.

“It’s never too early to start reading to babies. It promotes bonding in the early months and years from the joy of sharing a quality children’s picture book. Listening to, sharing and viewing books also helps children to develop the use and understanding of vocabulary.”

The Books for Babies initiative started in 1998 as a biennial project, and since 2007 has been running every year. It’s been made possible over the years thanks to local sponsorship including the Invercargill Licensing Trust Foundation, Community Trust South and Mataura Licensing Trust.

Gina White, President of Southland Literacy Society says she’s also thankful for the support of the volunteers from the committee who label, pack and deliver the literacy packs to the maternity units in Southland.


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