Giving the gift of literacy to children in our community

Telling Tales presents $10,000 to local literacy organizations

For the past eight years, Telling Tales has been proud to give back to literacy projects in the Hamilton community. These contributions directly support local youth, and assist in achieving the Festival’s goals of celebrating stories throughout the year and helping to inspire a love of reading.

“It is immensely satisfying to once again be able to extend support to vital literacy programs in our community,” says Susan Jasper, Telling Tales Festival Chair & Founder. “The Read to Your Baby initiative empowers doctors to deliver an encouraging literacy message and a free board book to thousands of young parents, while the Rotary Summer Literacy Program enables hundreds of children to develop their literacy skills in a truly fun environment over the summer. And the relationship is reciprocal; these partners support and build Telling Tales throughout the year. Collectively we are doing much to raise readers!”

Since 2009, Telling Tales has raised just over $109,000 for literacy projects in our community. The Telling Tales Festival relies on the generosity of sponsors and donors. After all the operating costs are covered, a portion of the remaining funds are donated back into valuable community literacy initiatives.

Each year a committee of Rotarians review funding proposals. The Committee is comprised of representatives from Rotary Clubs that support at the silver sponsorship level. This year they included: Rotary Club of Burlington Central, Rotary Club of Dundas Valley Sunrise, Rotary Club of Hamilton A.M., and Rotary Club of Waterdown.

We’re pleased to announce that the recipients of this year’s literacy funding are:

Early Literacy Hamilton’s “Read to your Baby” program: $5,000

Cheque presentation to the Read to Your Baby program

From left to right: Naomi Brun, Hamilton Public Library; Kim Burns, Affiliated Services for Children and Youth; Evette Sauriol, Read to Your Baby Chair; Susan Jasper, Telling Tales Founder; and Peter Thoem, Rotary Club of Burlington Central

With the Read to Your Baby initiative a book is given to new parents at their child’s 18-month enhanced well-baby visit, by a doctor or health practitioner, along with a “prescription” to read with their child daily and an invitation to get their child a library card.

“Early Literacy Hamilton is dedicated to Hamilton’s children having access to a community rich in resources early on in life so they emerge as lifelong learners of literacy and contributors to Hamilton’s future,” says Laura Wilson, Chair of Early Literacy Hamilton. “Read to Your Baby is a program that provides literacy investments in children’s lives to last a lifetime.”

Read to Your Baby Program Facts

  • This program offers board books in 161 practices or clinics
  • In 2016, 1,900 books were delivered to family physicians, who in turn delivered them to young families
  • Over the course of the Read to Your Baby initiative in Hamilton, over 6,000 books have been delivered to families

 

Rotary Summer Literacy Program: $5,000

Cheque presentation to the Rotary Summer Literacy Program

From left to right: Susan Jasper, Telling Tales Founder; Kevin Anstee, Rotary Club of Hamilton; Robert Blunsdon, Rotary Summer Literacy Program; Paul Takala, Hamilton Public Library; Nancy Baker, Rotary Club of Hamilton; and Paul Lakin, Rotary Club of Hamilton AM

The Rotary Summer Literacy Program focuses on literacy development of at-risk youth in Hamilton. Based out of the Wever Community Hub, it acts as a bridge over the summer months to provide these children an opportunity to develop literacy skills.

“The Rotary Summer Literacy program is excited to partner with Telling Tales for another summer. Thanks to the generosity of Telling Tales, over 1,000 children have enjoyed a free session of the Rotary Summer Literacy Program since the introduction of the Festival,” says Robert Blunsdon, Program Director of the Rotary Summer Literacy Program.

“The spirit of Telling Tales is alive everyday at Rotary Summer Literacy. Every week students participate in a special writing clinic. Our Telling Tales Fridays inspire hundreds of children to use their imaginations and become authors and illustrators. The Rotary Summer Literacy Program is grateful to Telling Tales for their generosity.”

2016 Literacy Funding Announcement

From left to right: Joanna Williams, Telling Tales PR Manager; Tony Del Monaco, Hamilton Public Library; Suzanne Hampson, Hamilton Public Library; Donna Millard, Hamilton-Wentworth District School Board; Melanie Southern, Hamilton Public Library; Karen Anderson, Hamilton Public Library; Kim Burns, Affiliated Services for Children and Youth; Laura Lukasik, Hamilton Public Library; Evette Sauriol, Read to Your Baby Chair; Naomi Brun, Hamilton Public Library; Peter Thoem, Rotary Club of Burlington Central; Lita Barrie, Hamilton Public Library; Susan Jasper, Telling Tales Founder; Nancy Baker, Rotary Club of Hamilton; Mark Tharme, Muse Marketing Group; Judy Boswell, Muse Marketing Group; Robert Blunsdon, Rotary Summer Literacy Program; Kevin Anstee, Rotary Club of Hamilton; Paul Takala, Hamilton Public Library; and Paul Lakin, Rotary Club of Hamilton AM