What’s the use of publishing if people aren’t reading? Get tips for nurturing a reading culture from Ian Darke, coordinator of LetraViva, a network of Christian publishers in Latin America. “It’s not a question of literacy, but a matter of using books…How can we encourage people to read more and use books better?”
1. Educate families. Help parents encourage their children to read. Hold workshops with parents in schools to talk about why reading is important. If you explain why it’s good for kids to read, parents may also read more, aiming to be a good example.
2. Connect with churches. If a pastor shows why reading is important, that communicates the congregation. Consider book tables, little libraries and more in church.
3. Target young people. I’ve heard of youth pastors who meet monthly in a coffee shop or Starbucks and create a book group, then use Twitter and texting to touch base in between meetings. This can be excellent discipleship.
4. Use Christian media. In Burundi there’s a Christian TV program on reading featuring books and the impact on readers’ lives.
It’s great to write, edit and publish books, but if they’re not read, and the books don’t transform lives, it’s all in vain.
Please share your ideas for encouraging reading here.