When Canada reads, Canada grows

TORONTO, Oct. 15, 2013 /CNW/ - The National Reading Campaign, www.nationalreadingcampaign.ca, today unveiled its new public engagement campaign and website, launching its efforts to make Canada a nation of readers.

If you think Canada is already a nation of readers, here are a few facts to consider:

         "Just over half of the Canadian households surveyed spent no money on books." *

         "Those who responded that they had read a Canadian book have decreased from 41% in 2002 to 24% in 2012." **

         "The percentage of Ontario students in grade 3 who report they "like to read" dropped from 76% in 1998/99 to 50% in 2010/11." ***

Through its activities, the National Reading Campaign promotes the joy of reading as both valuable and pleasurable. Reading impacts all aspects of our lives, improving not only our economy and quality of life, but also our ability to be responsible citizens.

Visit www.nationalreadingcampaign.ca and:

Today's launch is the culmination of five years of activity by a multi-sector national coalition of passionate reading advocates dedicated to the principle that reading is essential to the wellbeing and happiness of every Canadian and to the health of our democracy. Their work resulted in the formulation of a National Reading Plan, which maps out an action plan of research, advocacy and public engagement designed to encourage and grow a reading society. To download a copy of the Plan, click here: www.nationalreadingcampaign.ca/our-work/the-national-reading-plan/

A Board of Directors chaired by Patsy Aldana and a staff headed by Executive Director James Roy guide the not-for-profit organization.

Financial support for the National Reading Campaign has been provided by TD Bank Group, the Canada Council for the Arts, the Canadian Commission for UNESCO, Kobo, and the Ontario Media Development Corporation, among others. Media sponsors include Shaw Media, CBC, Torstar Inc., Metro, St. Joseph's Media, Walrus and the Literary Review of Canada.

A press kit is available by visiting www.nationalreadingcampaign.ca/about-us/contact-us/media/

* K. Hill, (2005). Who buys books in Canada? A statistical analysis based on household spending data. Statistical Insights on the Arts, 3 (4) http://www.arts.on.ca/AssetFactory.aspx?did=423

** Sarah Tutty, "What Canadians Think about Canadian Books." Booknet Canada, April 24, 2013. http://www.booknetcanada.ca/blog/2013/4/4/what-canadians-think-about-canadian-books.html#.Ug5vM1MWHR0

*** Reading enjoyment on the decline in Ontario Schools, People for Education, January 9, 2012. http://www.peopleforeducation.ca/pfe-news/reading-enjoyment-on-the-decline-in-ontario-schools/

SOURCE: National Reading Campaign

For further information:

For further media information or to arrange an interview contact:

Marcia McClung
off. 416 977-2576
cell 647 284 7428

Holly Kent
Community Manager
off. 416 847-0309 x 252
cell 416-838-8226

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