Today is the International Day of Literacy! Thanks to UNESCO (United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation) the International Day of Literacy was first celebrated in 1966 to highlight the importance of literacy to individuals, communities and societies. Celebrations of ILD have been taking place all over the world for 48 years, reminding the international community of the important skills; reading and writing.
1 in 5 adults worldwide cannot read or write, this unbelievable statistic equates to 776 million people. Writing your own name or reading a line out of a book is a basic educational skill that countries like ours don’t need to worry about, but individuals in many third world countries are denied these skills.
UNESCO’s aim is to tackle the link between poverty and literacy, and raise public awareness of the priceless value of the written word, and of the necessity to promote an educated, literate society.
It’s hard to think where we would be without basic literacy, for one I wouldn’t be writing this blog article, and you wouldn’t be reading it! Personally, reading and writing are two things I really enjoy, and I couldn’t imagine my life without these skills. 1 in 6 people in the UK struggle with literacy, a figure which UNESCO and other charities such as The National Literacy Trust are trying to reduce.
Each year, UNESCO awards International Literacy Prizes of $20,000. Winners in 2013 included Literate India, and The Dhaka Ahsania Mission in Bangladesh. This year’s theme is Literacy and Sustainability Development, with prizes already set to be received by the Lifelong Learning School for Community Development Poligono Sur in Spain and the The Molteno Institute for Language and Literacy in South Africa.
At Learning Resources we understand the importance of introducing literacy at an early age, giving young learners the opportunity to have fun while learning an important, fundamental skill. From phonics resources through to grammar and reading comprehension, we have literacy resources to motivate and engage children into developing their reading, writing and vocabulary skills.
If you would like more information about UNESCO and the International Day of Literacy, visit their website at http://en.unesco.org/events/international-literacy-day-2014.
Until next time…