Over the weekend, the outgoing United Kingdom High Commissioner to Ghana, Jon Benjamin, underscored the need for teachers and parents to encourage children to engage in reading because it is a fundamental skill set which contributes to the success of individuals.
The British diplomat, who volunteered to read with children drawn from the Ablekuma South constituency as part of Raising Readers initiative by Tigo Shelter for Education programme and Raising Readers Foundation at his residence in Accra, noted that reading is vital for children’s development.
“Any subject you study in school or later work on professionally is based on reading and acquiring information so it is absolutely fundamental that right at a young age, we give children the opportunity to hone this skill set,” he remarked.
Commenting on the initiative, he noted that he was impressed by the work done so far and hoped it grows from strength to strength with the needed support from stakeholders in the educational sector.
“I’m incredibly impressed by the reading skills of the children who came today, including a few of them who were extremely young, but read a whole book very well, clearly and made no mistakes.
“A voluntary project like this needs volunteers – people who are motivated, willing to give up their time and maybe a little bit of money to make it happen. It is also important that in the state sector the schools are funded to provide basic education because there is nothing basic than being able to read well,” he said.
Speaking at the session also was the Honourable Alfred Oko Vanderpuije, Member of Parliament for Ablekuma South constituency, who expressed profound thanks to the organisers for extending the initiative to his constituency.
“I would like to thank the team, the volunteers and everyone behind it for providing an opportunity for our children to develop the habit of reading. This is a wonderful initiative. If our children would be successful in school, they will need to read since reading is a tool for success in education,” he noted.
The community reading sessions will continue this Saturday at Kojo Ababio Millennium City School in Mamprobi.