On Tuesday 29 January, the Closing Conference for the Family Literacy Works! international project took place at the Kranj City Library. The purpose of the project was to develop a professional profile of a family literacy facilitator. The project began with an analysis on family literacy in the participating countries, presented in an extensive report available in electronic format. The project found that several organisations are engaged in family literacy, but that they are mostly promoting reading literacy in children. Based on these findings, they created a training programme for family literacy facilitators in libraries. The 30-hour programme is composed of six modules, related to the areas of expertise, children and adult education, facilitating, interpersonal relations, as well as the social field, management, and personal growth. As part of the project, pilot implementations were carried out in the participating countries. In Slovenia, libraries from all around the country took part in the pilot facilitator training. The librarians then prepared meetings with families in their local areas, where they connected reading with learning for both parents and children.
The Conference started with an address by the Directress of the Kranj City Library, Breda Karun. A presentation of the project followed. The project lasted for two years and involved five countries (Austria, Slovenia, Portugal, Romania, and North Macedonia). Maja Lesar introduced three key results: programme analysis, the development of a facilitator’s professional profile, and the implementation of training for facilitators and parents.
The presentation of the project was followed by a workshop. Tilka Jamnik, MA, a promotor of reading and an expert in the area of youth literature, showed a good example of working with children and their parents in a conversation with two families. Then, Dr Wolfgang Moser of Graz (Austria) introduced various activities implemented in his local area to encourage family literacy in libraries. I would like to highlight the so-called “bookstart”, a starting package that all families with pre-schoolers receive for free, and which acts as a family guide to the library for parents and children. The project also included STEM activities intended to attract fathers and children to the libraries.
Estera Možina, MSc, of the SIAE introduced a stakeholder network for literacy and reading culture in families, which was active in 2018, and the envisaged family literacy portal.
Špela Kocjančič (firstname.lastname@example.org)