10 years of getting the word out about Family Literacy

    Family Literacy Day marks a decade of celebrating parents and children
    learning together

    TORONTO, Jan. 24 /CNW/ - ABC CANADA Literacy Foundation, Honda Canada and
children's writer Robert Munsch have been calling on Canadian families to
read, write, surf and sing together to make family literacy a priority in
their homes. The program continues to be important because low literacy is a
daily challenge for four out of 10 adult Canadians, age 16 to 65 -
representing 9 million Canadians.
    Family Literacy Day (FLD) can be celebrated everyday - by simply setting
aside 15 minutes of family time to read, play board games or even follow a
recipe together. "We encourage all families to read and learn together," says
Margaret Eaton, President, ABC CANADA. "15 minutes a day goes a long way for
the parent and the child. Those precious minutes can prepare children for
challenges ahead, encourage a lifetime of reading enjoyment and can sharpen
the adult's literacy skills."
    There are thousands of FLD events taking place this week in schools,
libraries, community centres and homes across Canada thanks to the support of
numerous volunteers who contribute to the program's success.
    Today, Munsch will be reading at Willow Park Junior Public School in
Toronto. The school includes a parenting centre, also referred to as a family
literacy centre, where parents can sharpen their own skills while their
children get a head start on learning. While the children write letters and
postcards and create digital photo albums, their parents can take upgrading
    Robert Munsch couldn't be more excited about the 10th Family Literacy
Day, "I wish I could attend and read at every FLD event," he says. "Nothing
brings me as much joy as celebrating reading and learning together. Every
year, I look forward to engaging families in storytelling and other activities
that promote reading and writing, and my hope is that it will inspire families
to adopt these activities in their own homes all year round."
    Parents and children alike can gain the following benefits from simple
reading activities:

    -   Reading with your child at an early age can lead to independent
        reading by school age.
    -   Celebrating reading and books in your home has a positive impact on
        your child's future academic skills.
    -   Children who see their parents engaging in learning are more likely
        to become lifelong learners.

    ABC CANADA is grateful for the support from the numerous corporations and
media partners that have helped raise awareness of family literacy issues in
the last 10 years. The financial contribution made by founding sponsor, Honda
Canada is essential to FLD's success because it helps to support local
initiatives and national outreach, including today's event. "Honda Canada is
proud to support ABC CANADA's work and hopes that FLD programming will be
adopted by all communities across Canada," says Jim Miller, senior
vice-president, Honda Canada.
    For more information on Family Literacy Day, including family literacy
tips, activity ideas and event information, visit the ABC CANADA website:

    About ABC CANADA:

    ABC CANADA Literacy Foundation is Canada's private-sector voice
championing adult literacy. The national charity's initiatives and campaigns
are focused on bringing about meaningful change to raise Canadian adult
literacy skills. It envisions a Canada where individuals, regardless of their
circumstances, are provided the opportunities to increase those skills that
prepare people for realizing their full potential at work, at home and in the

For further information:

For further information: Jim Pollock, Director of Communications, ABC
CANADA Literacy Foundation, Phone: (416) 218-0010, ext. 126, E-mail:

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ABC Life Literacy Canada

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