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Dalby dads become reading role models

30 July 2015

School principals, teachers and groundskeepers will be among the Dalby Dads telling big stories at the Dads Read Family Fun Day next Saturday 8 August.

Back by popular demand, the free public event is supported by Arrow Energy, State Library of Queensland (SLQ) and Western Downs Regional Council.

The Dads Read program was created by the State Library of Queensland in 2012 to raise awareness of the importance of fathers and families reading to their children.

This year, the family fun day will be led by the 2015 Dalby Dads Read ambassadors:

  • David Kucks – Principal, Dalby South State School
  • Steve Gillespie – English teacher, Our Lady of the Southern Cross College
  • Barry Harth – Groundskeeper, Dalby State School
  • Stephen Wilson – Principal, Dalby Christian College

The ambassadors, all local dads, are raising awareness of the important role that fathers and other male role models play in children’s development.

“If your children see you reading, they see value in reading,” Dalby Christian College Principal Stephen Wilson said.

“Reading is the building block to all education, the more reading and various forms of reading you can expose your child to the more chance that child has at developing a stronger comprehension.

“Being a reading role model helps to transcend stereotypes through personal examples.”

Research has shown that just 10 minutes of reading to children a day helps strengthen their literacy and cognitive abilities, builds self-esteem and social competence, and fosters a love of reading.

Arrow has partnered with SLQ for the Dads Read program since 2013.

State Library of Queensland CEO and State Librarian Janette Wright said she was very pleased the Dads Read program was continuing to grow and broaden its reach into more regional centres through partnerships with public libraries and supporters like Arrow.

“The Dads Read family literacy initiative is about working with and within communities to raise the awareness of the importance of literacy development and we appreciate Arrow’s support in helping us do that,” she said.

“Arrow strongly supports community-based programs that deliver sustainable education benefits,” Arrow Vice President External Relations and Tenure Management Leisa Elder said.

“Books have the power to benefit children in a myriad of ways.

“The Dads Read program goes a long way in strengthening literacy skills and promoting reading as a fundamental life skill.”

Western Downs Regional Council Spokesperson for Community and Cultural Development and Health Services Councillor Carolyn Tillman said the 2015 Dads Read event will be bigger and better than last year.

“This year’s event marks the second time Western Downs Libraries has worked in partnership with Arrow Energy and SLQ to bring the Dads Read Family Fun Day to the region,” she said.

“Last year’s inaugural event was a huge success, with around 1,200 people coming along to support the initiative, and this year’s event will once again be held at Dalby’s newest learning and cultural hub, MyALL 107.

“The Dads Read program continues to grow in the Western Downs and it’s great to see so many families getting involved for their children.”

The partnership is part of Arrow’s Brighter Futures community investment fund, supporting local, not-for-profit groups on projects that build community capacity in health, safety, education and environmental awareness.

Brighter Futures has contributed more than $13 million to community projects across Queensland since 2011.

The Dads Read Family Fun Day will be held at the MyALL 107 arts, leisure and learning complex from 10am to 2pm on Saturday 8 August and will include access and activities in the library, gallery, cinema, 4DDD community radio and forecourt area.

For more information about the Dads Read program and event visit www.westerndownslibraries.com/dadsread, phone 1300 COUNCIL or email library@wdrc.qld.gov.au.