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Bookworms attend the 'Very Hungry Caterpillar' LEADSmart Literacy program launch

The LEADSmart Literacy program was launched recently with interactive storytelling sessions showcasing popular children’s book the 'Very Hungry Caterpillar', sponsored by Glencore’s Mount Isa Mines.

The program launched by the Lead Alliance will see books given to children who receive a point of care finger-prick test at Mount Isa Child Health or Gidgee Healing, improving access to books and supporting Mount Isa children’s cognitive development.

The LEADSmart Literacy program was launched with interactive storytelling sessions showcasing the popular children’s book the 'Very Hungry Caterpillar'.

Lead Alliance Project Officer, Daniella Hinton, says the concept for the LEADSmart Literacy program came from a national lead workshop in Broken Hill where local health services discussed their book program for selected residents.

At the workshop, they discussed the positive impacts on the community, particularly in children through the program.

Duane Daley, Indi-Rose Page, Jazlyn Daley, Ashlynn Daley and Aleerah Page had fun at the event.
Children dancing during the interactive storytelling sessions.

“On returning to Mount Isa, I was eager to establish a sustainable and more widely available program to all Mount Isa children,” says Daniella.

“The Indigenous Literacy Foundation and Mount Isa Mines were approached on the idea and committed to supporting the program into the future for the benefit of Mount Isa families.”

“The provision of a storybook will hopefully expand access to books in places where children learn, live and play, and empower adults to read alongside them in order to develop literacy skills during the most critical years of their development.”

“We hope it will prompt a love for books and reading and create the opportunity to share books with siblings and strengthen family bonds,” Daniella says.

Launching the LEADSmart Literacy program (left to right): Phil Barwick, Deputy Mayor - Mount Isa City Council, Dr Karen Murphy - Acting Chief Health Executive for the North West Hospital and Health Service, Daniella Hinton - Project Officer Lead Alliance, Maryann Wipaki - General Manager for Health, Safety, Environment and Community, Councillor Kim Coghlan and Robbie Katter - State Member for Traeger.

Queensland Metals General Manager for Health, Safety, Environment and Community, Maryann Wipaki, says Glencore was pleased to sponsor the program, to see books given to children who receive a point of care finger-prick test at Mount Isa Child Health or Gidgee Healing.

“The initiative will help to improve access to books during the crucial early years, while also helping to increase point of care testing,” says Maryann.

“We recognise the important role the Lead Alliance plays in keeping our community safe, and supporting our community by providing the information they need.”