ROOTS TO READ was established in June 2022 at NRGH to ensure that all infants have equal opportunity for a healthy literacy start. Free to all families, it was launched to address the rising rates of low literacy in Nanaimo, particularly in children starting kindergarten.
• We know that a healthy literacy start leads to optimal brain development in those crucial first couple of years, when brain growth is at its maximum!
• It can be confusing for parents to sort out what is best for healthy infant development, especially if their own literacy confidence is low.
• We know that the best way to promote literacy in babies is not with screens, but with direct social reading, singing, and storytelling, in any language, with a loving adult! This interaction is called “serve and return”. It is something that computers can’t provide.
• Screen time can actually slow infant language development. We have seen a measurable impact on our young children born during the COVID-19 pandemic, when screen times went up in most homes. Screen time is not recommended for learning under age 2 years. Read more about what Canadian pediatricians recommend here: https://caringforkids.cps.ca/handouts/behavior-and-development/screen-time-and-young-children
ROOTS TO READ PROGRAM provides:
• Carefully selected new board books that encourage READ, SPEAK AND SING loving interactions between caregiver and their newborn, to promote the development of early literacy
• Early Words educational cards for simple quick caregiver reference (from the Canadian Children’s Literacy Foundation, printed and used with permission)
• Information about local library access and other community resources
• A reusable Roots to Read book bag that can be used for library visits!
• Education from our health care team about how important families are in their infant’s literacy development
• ROOTS TO READ is run by a dedicated team of volunteers and is fully dependent on your donations.
To make donations to the Roots to Read program through the Nanaimo & District Hospital Foundation please use the form below. 100% of all donations will go directly to fund the program