RLAD ambassadors, Cale Morton, Felice Arena and Colin Garland

National Year of Reading

Thursday, March 01, 2012

The National Year of Reading’s national and state launches were held on 14 February, at the National Library in Canberra and the State Library of Victoria. 

The state launch was represented by staff from the City of Casey and Casey-Cardinia Library Corporation, accompanied by Read Like a Demon ambassadors Colin Garland and Cale Morton, as well as Melbourne CEO Cameron Schwab.

The National Year of Reading was launched by the Premier of Victoria, the Hon. Ted Baillieu MP and social commentator, author and demographer Bernard Salt.  

The national launch in Canberra was launched by Prime Minister Julia Gillard, Minister for School Education, Early Childhood and Youth, Peter Garrett, and Minister for the Arts, Simon Crean. 

The launch was hosted by Jennifer Byrne from First Tuesday Book Club, and guest speaker was actor and best-selling author in his own right, as well as the National Year of Reading Patron, William McInnes.

Speaking on behalf of both players at the State Library of Victoria event, Garland said, "It’s great to be an ambassador. Cale and I are very privileged to be helping kids in Casey. It’s good to be able to give back from being involved in footy, and not just in the Casey region, but throughout the community. The feedback we get when we hear from parents that their kids now like reading when they used to hate it, is great. It’s really exciting that the program will be getting even bigger this year, and it’s a credit to the Melbourne Football Club."

Sharing stories with best-selling author Felice Arena of ‘Specky Magee’ fame - himself a National Ambassador in this National Year of Reading - both Garland and Morton were in familiar territory as Premier Ted Baillieu said, "Reading is at the heart of us all, and a love of reading is something that will serve you well your entire life."

The Melbourne Football Club has ventured deep into reading and writing territory in recent years, with the publication of two books of its own that have emerged from the Read and Write Like a Demon programs.

‘The Chocolate Man’ and the ‘The Love Story’ have brought to young readers a greater depth of involvement as a highlight of the programs, which look set to continue into a wonderful new chapter in 2012.

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