Did you know we have 100 amazing Literacy Champions in Manchester? The volunteering programme led by Read Manchester started in March 2022 and has gone from strength to strength. As well as helping with 1000s of hours of volunteering for Read Manchester events and book gifting, volunteers have designed and delivered their own initiatives and projects.

Here’s what some of the Literacy Champions say about their volunteering:

Feels amazing to share my love of reading with others.

Storytelling is magic. Being a literacy champ is like being a magician.

I’ve enjoyed my time as a literacy champion. It’s been very fun to meet new people and make a difference.

I’m so proud to be a part of Read Manchester. It has built my confidence so thank you.

Read Manchester wouldn’t be able to do what it does without the amazing support of the Literacy Champions. They supported us with over 2000 hours of volunteering last year, which included:

  • helping with pop up events in parks
  • Look for a Book events for the Festival of Libraries and the National Trust Blossom Trail
  • helping to pack and prepare 1000s of books for distribution to local children and families
  • set up little libraries book exchanges in local communities
  • Led poetry competitions, storytelling and so much more…

Of course, we wanted to celebrate these successes as part of Volunteers Week in June. Our first stop was at RHS Castlefield Viaduct for an amazing tour where we even got to do a bit of planting!

This was followed by an evening event at Manchester Central Library where we celebrated in style in the Chief Librarians office (ssshhhh – it even has a secret door!). We were joined by lots of literacy champions including Youth Literacy champions from Didsbury High school.

The celebration included a brilliant behind-the-scenes tour of the library. There were lots of “ooos” and “ahhs” to be heard as we explored the library vaults and even a few cools and wows. We would highly recommend booking a tour if you can as you get a whole new perspective on what happens behind library doors!

Find out more

If you would like to know more about this flexible, self-led and fulfilling volunteering role, please contact helen.beesley@literacytrust.org.uk.