Rachael Maskell MP for York Central is supporting a campaign run by charity The Reading Agency to encourage all primary school children to take part in this year’s Summer Reading Challenge, which launches across England and Wales on Saturday 15th July.

To mark the starting date of the summer-long project, Rachael will be donating several books to York’s city centre library York Explore on Saturday morning. The Summer Reading Challenge, a unique partnership between The Reading Agency and public libraries across the UK, last year got over 729,000 children borrowing, reading and talking about their favourite books.

The theme for the 2017 Summer Reading Challenge is Animal Agents, illustrated by the UK’s best-selling children’s illustrator Tony Ross. To take part in the Animal Agents Summer Reading Challenge, all children need to do is to head to their local library where they will be given a collector folder to keep a record of their reading journey. As children read at least six library books over the summer, they collect stickers which will help them crack the clues and help the Animal Agents find out what’s really been going on behind the scenes!

The Summer Reading Challenge reaches children and young people of all ages. For pre-schoolers there is a mini-challenge while young people (aged 13 to 24) can volunteer and support younger children taking part, as part of The Reading Agency’s Reading Hack programme. Volunteering provides a quality workplace experience for young people in libraries, inspires them to think about their future career and increases their employability as they gain useful life skills and confidence. Last year over 7,500 young people across the UK volunteered.

Rachael Maskell MP for York Central says:
“I am delighted to support the summer reading challenge as it is an enjoyable way for children to remain engaged and keep up their reading skills during the long summer holiday. It is possible to sign up at any library from Saturday 15 July and the challenge is completely free. York Explore also have lots of events going on throughout summer and I would encourage parents and carers to either view the York Explore website or pop into their local library to find our more.”

Fiona Williams, Chief Executive of Explore York Libraries and Archives says:
“One of our very important aims in Explore is to promote the love of reading to all, but especially to children. Reading is a wonderful thing to do, taking you to different worlds in your imagination or helping you find facts and information to support your own interests. The Summer Reading Challenge helps us to do this and we know that children who have taken part have enjoyed and grown in confidence with their reading.”


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