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Bring A Book, Buy A Book Fundraiser – Get Involved!

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Less Than Half of Irish Parents Read to Children Daily, as St. Michael’s House Encourages Parents to Go ‘Tech-NO!’

A recent survey carried out by St. Michael’s House, one of Ireland’s largest providers of community based services for children and adults with an intellectual disability, revealed that just under half (49%) of parents read to their children most nights, with almost 29% stating that they never do.
The survey was carried out in advance of the charity’s annual ‘Bring A Book, Buy A Book’  fundraising campaign, which encourages schools, businesses and communities to donate their second hand books which can then by bought by their peers for just €2 per book. The campaign, which was launched today, encourages people to close a screen and open a book.

The campaign, which runs from the 1st-8th March, also coincides with World Book Week.
The results showed that as reading time decreases for Irish children, screen-time on devices such as tablets and smartphones, was on the rise, with 68% of parents stating that their children had their own device. Almost one in four children, (23%) are now using the device as part of their bedtime routine; it’s popularity emphasised by the fact parents stated that more than half of children (55%) prefer screen time to reading.

Barbara Wiseman, Head of Communications St Michael’s House, commented; “With our Bring a Book, Buy a Book campaign theme year; ‘Tech- NO!’,  we are encouraging parents to get involved during World Book Week, asking them to close a screen and make time to read a book with their children. Our statistics show that we are all – our children included- perhaps overlooking the joy of reading   a book as we instead use technology and devices to wind down at the end of a day. We would urge parents to take the time during World Book Week to pick up some books, and get reading again.
The Bring a Book, Buy a Book initiative is the perfect opportunity to get back reading and teach children that reading can be a fun and imaginative activity, which opens doors to all kinds of new worlds. Parents and children alike can offload their pre-loved books to their family and friends, and bring home new stories for just €2 per book.”
The survey results showed:

  • 68% of children under 12 have a device ( IPad/Tablet/Smartphone)
  • 23% of children use the device as part of his/her bedtime routine
  • 38% of children asked for a device last Christmas
  • 43% of children spend more than 45 mins on a device per day
  • 55% of children prefer screen time instead of book reading
  • 29% of parents never read to their children
  • Half of parents are worried that their child spend too much time on the device

The 2017 ‘Bring a Book, Buy a Book’ campaign in aid of  St. Michael’s House will take place from the 1st – 8th March. To register your location and receive a starter pack visit: www.bringabookbuyabook.ie, email:fundraising@smh.ie or phone (01) 8840200.

All funds raised go directly to St Michael’s Summer Supports for children with Intellectual disabilities. St. Michael’s House  is seeking funding to support the development of a pilot summer project to support families of children who are in need of additional supports during the summer holiday period. This is a pilot project, and if successful can be built upon for successive years.
The ‘Bring a Book, Buy a Book’ campaign was first piloted in 2008 with 15 different locations taking part. The campaign has since enjoyed growing success with over 200 locations taking part in 2016. St. Michael’s House are delighted to report that over 100,000 books were successfully swapped by book lovers during the Bring a Book, Buy a Book 2016 campaign.
About St. Michael’s House
St. Michael’s House is a community-based voluntary organisation. Founded by parents in 1955, the organisation has grown to become one of the largest providers of services to people with an intellectual disability in Ireland. Today St Michael’s House provides a range of specialised services to over 1,751 children and adults with a learning disability and their families through 170 community based centres in the greater Dublin area.

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