Former Governor General Bill Hayden and wife Dallas with myself and Mayor launching the new Library Logo/Mark

Mayor and myself with Nicole Watson helping to launch NYOR Reading in Ipswich

 IPSWICH residents are being encouraged to spend as much time with a book as they possibly can during 2012.

Ipswich Mayor Paul Pisasale said Ipswich City Council had set a goal for this year’s National Year of Reading to encourage Ipswich residents to become a city of readers.

“We know there are many Ipswich residents out there who already love to read and are great supporters of the Ipswich Library and Information Service,” Cr Pisasale said.

“We want to see even more residents, no matter their age, take up the challenge to read, read, read during 2012. “Reading is a fantastic activity which is not only educational but also lots of fun.”

Cr Pisasale, who is an Ipswich National Year of Reading Ambassador along with Ipswich born and bred cricket star Shane Watson, said Ipswich residents would be sure to embrace the national year. “Our libraries are already one of the most popular places in town and we want attendance rates to climb even higher this year. “We have already had a fantastic reaction to our City of Readers competition which offers a prize to the library member who borrows the most books and materials from the library each month during 2012.

“Our first winner for this competition is Anna Barradeen from Brassall and we would like to congratulate her on this achievement. “Anna borrowed a total of 23 items throughout the month to be named the January winner of the Our City of Readers competition.” At the end of 2012, the library member with the most books borrowed for the year will win an iPad2.

Tourism and Libraries Committee Chairperson Councillor David Pahlke said today’s official launch was just the start of a year-long program of activities planned in Ipswich for the National Year of Reading. “We are planning lots of interesting and exciting activities and programs to celebrate this important year,” Cr Pahlke said.

“The activities include A Diverse Ipswich which is a program which will be held in May, August and December to celebrate language and literacy across cultures. “These sessions will incorporate music, song, dance, activities and food focusing on a particular culture with the aim of bringing together families from diverse cultural backgrounds in an atmosphere of fun, literacy, learning and positive library experiences.”

Cr Pahlke said a number of the activities were still in the planning stage with some details yet to be finalised. “We will be promoting activities to the community as they are organised but rest ssured that the Ipswich Library and Information Service will be active participants in this vital year.” Cr Pahlke said the main goal of the National Year of Reading was to remind adults and children alike about the importance of reading and literacy.

“Recent research indicates that nearly half the Australian population struggles without the literacy skills to meet the most basic demands of everyday life and work. “Statistics indicate that 46% of Australians can’t understand newspapers, follow a recipe, make sense of timetables or understand the instructions on a medicine bottle.” “Libraries across Australia, including the Ipswich Library and Information Service, will be partnering with writers, schools, publishers, booksellers, child care providers, health professionals and other organisations to help people discover and rediscover the magic of books and reading.

“Our Ipswich libraries are involved because at the heart of the library service is the concept that everyone in the community has free access to information and reading resources to learn, growth and reach their full potential. “None of these things of course are possible if someone is unable to read.” Cr Pahlke said the aim of the campaign was to make sure, by the end of 2012, that everyone in Ipswich knows how important reading is to the city’’s social, educational and economic growth.

For more information about the 2012 National Year of Reading in Ipswich visit the Ipswich Library and Information Service website at or contact the National Year of Reading Project Officer on 3810 6595.

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