Young readers can become environmental champions at Southend Libraries this summer

July 15, 2021

Children can become Wild World Heroes this summer by taking part in the Summer Reading Challenge 2021 at their local library.

In partnership with The Reading Agency, children aged four to 12 can sign up for the challenge at their local Southend Library between Saturday 17 July to the Saturday 28 August. There will also be a challenge for younger siblings, children under the age of four, to take part in.

The 'Wild World Heroes' theme, in partnership with WWF (World Wide Fund for Nature), will encourage children to complete a fun reading activity focused on environmental issues.

Cllr Laurie Burton, cabinet member for Children and Learning, said: “I am delighted that we can deliver the summer reading challenge to children in Southend, and with such an important subject for this year’s theme.

“I encourage parents/carers to sign their children up for the summer reading challenge. Reading is such a wonderful gift they can bestow, and it gives children an insight into the world.”

You can sign up in any Southend-on-Sea Library from Saturday 17 July. Just fill out a joining form, pick up a goody bag and checkout your books. Children who complete the challenge by reading six books will be entered into a prize draw with a chance to win Adventure Island wristbands in September.

Karen Napier, CEO of The Reading Agency, said: “We’re delighted to be announcing further details of this year’s Summer Reading Challenge, and to have the support of our wonderful ambassadors, Dara McAnulty and Steve Backshall. We hope that this year, more children than ever will feel inspired and encouraged to sign up to the Challenge. After a difficult year for many, we are immensely grateful for the continued and longstanding support of public libraries, and we’re looking forward to working closely with them to help get children reading, alongside our brilliant partners and sponsors.”

The challenge takes place in mythical Wilderville where the Heroes and their animal companions have to take action to save the natural world. Children will get a fold-out map and with each book read, get a sticker to transform each area and make Wilderville a better, greener place to live. After reading six books, they are environmental champions and can collect a certificate and medal from their local library.

Tanya Steele, CEO, WWF, said: “Young people are the future - and they are some of the most passionate and enthusiastic advocates for our natural world. I’m continuously inspired by our young supporters at WWF and their efforts to speak up for nature, often in wonderful and creative ways. We are delighted to be partners of the Summer Reading Challenge in this milestone year for environmental action.

We hope it will encourage more children across the UK to get reading, and to take positive action for the planet – our one shared home.”

You can write a review or draw a picture and send it to librarydevelopment@southend.gov.uk and we’ll put them onto social media or our website.

Children can talk to library staff about their books by booking an appointment during August at any library in Southend. Book a slot at your local library by calling 01702 215011.

Visit www.summerreadingchallenge.org.uk for more information.

Find out more about the Wild World Heroes Book Collection here.


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