Born to Read

Our partnership with Beanstalk is giving poorer children in the UK the reading skills they need for a better future. We're doing that by placing volunteers in local primary schools to support children who are struggling with reading. Help us reach more children: become a volunteer now.

Born to Read - Alysha with reading volunteer Soraya.

Volunteer Soraya spends time each week helping seven-year-old Alysha with her reading. "It's really fun," says Alysha. "First we read a book and then we play a game and sometimes we do word searches. It helps me to learn."

The problem

Learning to read unlocks a world of opportunity for children. It boosts their chances of achieving at school and, beyond that, of finding work.

But far too many boys and girls in the UK fall badly behind in literacy in their first few years at school. And this is even more common among children from poor or disadvantaged families.

Most of these children never catch up: 93% of those who leave primary school without basic reading skills later fail to get five good GCSEs. Without the basic qualifications they need for so many jobs, these children face a future of low pay or unemployment.

We believe that every child should have the chance to fulfil their potential - and that means being able to read with confidence.

That's why we've launched Born to Read.

How Born to Read works

We're working in partnership with Beanstalk – an organisation with over 40 years’ experience in helping children learn to read. Our programme will provide almost 8,000 more reading helper placements to support 23,000 pupils in schools across the UK.

Together we can break the vicious cycle that keeps people poor – generation after generation.

What you can do to help

Are you passionate about reading? Help us to reach more children by volunteering now.


Last updated: January 2016.