The Ballarat Reads programs is helping young mothers develop a love of books and reading in their children.
A book is delivered to the homes of children aged zero to five-years-old each month through the Ballarat Reads program, that has now expanded to support the Yuille Park Young Parents Program.
Eight families in the young parents program have been enrolled in Ballarat Reads, and a workshop held at the school's Delacombe site helped support the young mothers to understand the importance of spending time reading with their children.
It builds his imagination and he is starting to know some words.Teagan Fisher
Yuille Park Young Parents Program participant Teagan Fisher said her son Mayson, 3, was excited when a book was delivered to their home each month.
"He takes them straight inside, picks one for him and one for his brother, sits on his bed and reads them," she said.
"At night time we sit down and read together. He likes to look at the pictures and the words. It builds his imagination and he is starting to know some words."
The Ballarat Reads program is a charity partner for Ballarat charity fun run event Run For A Cause, meaning participants can support to choose the program when they register for the event.
Other charity partners include the Ballarat Toy Library, Uniting Ballarat, Ballarat Community Health, Playgroup Victoria, Eureka Community Kindergarten Association and Eureka Mums.
Watch the video about Run For A Cause below.
Ballarat Foundation chief executive Matt Jenkins said the focus previously for Ballarat Reads was to deliver books to homes, but it was hoped funding raised through Run For A Cause would allow the program to set up further services.
Plans for expansion include establishing free book exchange programs across the city and a pop up reading and activity space at Stocklands based on the themes of books delivered to homes. Further workshops are also planned for the Yuille Park Young Parents Program.
"We know that putting a hard book in the hands of young children has positive outcomes for when they get to school and gives them confidence and ability to read by being more familiar with books," Mr Jenkins said.
"The program was formed to ensure every young child had the opportunity to touch, feel, read books as early as they can... and it allows connective time to sit down and read with family together."
Around 300 children are currently enrolled with the Ballarat Reads program.
Yuille Park Young Parents Program participant Chelsea Nijam said her son Ashton, 3, had received two books so far.
"He doesn't really like when people read but he likes the pictures... but through one of the books he has learnt how to count to 20," she said.
The Ballarat Foundation partnered with the Readings Foundation to bring Ballarat Reads to the Yuille Park Young Parents Program, while books are delivered in partnership with the Dolly Parton Imagination Library, Penguin Books and local community partners.
Visit run4ac.org/ for more information or to register for the event.
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