Dads lend a hand to encourage reading

A group of dads have helped renovate Palatine Library as part of the Better Start project.  Dads and supporters are pictured celebrating.
A group of dads have helped renovate Palatine Library as part of the Better Start project. Dads and supporters are pictured celebrating.
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Dads tested their DIY skills to come up with a novel way to encourage children to read.

They decided to help revamp the area at South Shore’s Palatine Library used by the town’s youngest bookworms.

A group of dads have helped renovate Palatine Library as part of the Better Start project.  Pictured is Kelvin Giles with three-year-old daughter Grace Giles.

A group of dads have helped renovate Palatine Library as part of the Better Start project. Pictured is Kelvin Giles with three-year-old daughter Grace Giles.

The project, part of the NSPCC-led Better Start scheme, saw the dads build interactive book cases and create a brighter reading area designed to spark the imagination.

A wall mural has also been painted with the help of Blackpool-based interior designer Rachel Cox and the Illuminations team from the council’s Lightworks depot.

One of the dads who took part Scott Mosley said: “I’ve been involved with this project right from the beginning and I know it’s going to make a real difference to families who use Palatine Library by encouraging more families to read to their children.

“I feel proud to be part of it and I’m looking forward to inviting my friends and family to see what we’ve achieved.”

The project at the library on St Annes Road is part of Blackpool Better Start’s Raising Early Achievement in Literacy Programme.

Its aims are to encourage parents to develop their child’s communication and literacy skills alongside the ‘Fathers Reading Every Day’ programme for male carers.

Sharon Mather, community development manager at Blackpool Better Start, said: “It is great to see local dads keen to make a really positive difference to the library facilities for Blackpool’s children.

“The new enhanced areas are designed to encourage youngsters into the library and allow them to discover the joys of books.

“Any dads interested in getting involved in our dad’s projects in Blackpool should contact their local children’s centre for more information.”

Dads are also being encouraged to read more to their children.

In February, Better Start held a four-week story-telling scheme called FRED (Fathers Reading Every Day) after research found dads reading to their children has more of an impact on their development than mums doing it.