The main purpose of the project is to raise the first generation of Lithuanian children whose reading experience start almost from birth. Together, family reading is encouraged and young parents are helped to realise the importance of early reading by giving them the necessary tools and knowledge. The slogan of the project also reflects this: “With Each Book, The Generation Grows Up!”. The organisers of the project believe that the “Book Start” is the start of successful life for all Lithuanian children.
The gift basket consists of: Indrė Zalieckienė “Kapt kapt kapt”, which corresponds to the possibilities and needs of children aged 0–3, advice to parents prepared by the specialists of the National Library on how to read with a child, colourful markers, and their very first reader’s certificate, which a family may get from their nearest library. All of the tools are provided in the special “Book Start” backpack, which the child, in the future, will be able to use when going to the library.
Since 29 November 2021, every newborn in Lithuania receives a gift basket in the maternity wards of all Lithuanian hospitals; since February 2023, in all Lithuanian diplomatic agencies and consular institutions in the United Kingdom, Norway, Germany, Ireland, Denmark, Sweden, Netherlands, Spain, France and Belgium, the gift baskets are presented to the Lithuanian diaspora parents or guardians of children.
During the performance of the project, various events and other activities inciting reading from the very first days are being continuously organised. With this project, we participate in various festivals, conferences and trade shows. Moreover, training for various specialists is organised. The dissemination of the main message of the project through various media channels is being continuously taken care of. At the end of 2022, the Competition for Encouraging Early Reading was organised – it was the first event of such scale in Lithuania on the topic of early reading.
The patron of the project – the First Lady Diana Nausėdienė.
The project “Book Start” is a part of the Reading Incitement Program, which is financed by the Ministry of Culture of the Republic of Lithuania.
Martynas Mažvydas National Library of Lithuania is executing the project. Project partners: Ministry of Education, Science and Sport, Lithuanian Office of the International Board on Books for Young People (IBBY) and Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Information project partner – “Lietuvos nacionalinis radijas ir televizija”.
More about the project: www.knygustartas.lt
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