The Sylvan Lake Municipal Library is encouraging everyone, children and adult alike, to take a few minutes out of their day to read for 15 minutes of Jan. 25 for the annual Read for 15 event, and Family Literacy Day which is a few days later on Jan. 27. File Photo

Sylvan Lake Municipal Library encourages residents to Read for 15

Read for 15 is an annual event held in connection to Family Literacy Day.

Family Literacy Day is quickly approaching, and that once again means libraries across Alberta will be encouraging residents to read for 15 minutes.

This year’s Read for 15 event will be held on Jan. 25 across not only the province, but also the entire country.

Caroline Vandriel, library director of the Sylvan Lake Municipal Library, sits on the planning committee for the annual event and say reading is an important task everyone must learn.

“You can’t get by in this life without being able to read,” she said.

Reading for 15 minutes, is incredibly easy, Vandriel says, and most people have already done so before they leave the house in the morning.

“It can be as simple as reading the cereal box, or checking your email – and we all know how much time that can take up,” said Vandriel.

On Jan. 25 the Sylvan Lake library is asking all residents to log their 15 minutes with the library.

Last year Sylvan Lake on on average with the entire province, with roughly 27 per cent of residents logging their reading.

This year Vandriel would love to see the number rise to 35 per cent.

“Everyone is reading all ready, it’s just a matter of telling us here at the library that you have.”

It doesn’t matter if you are doing the reading or being read to, according to Vandriel. She says if children come to story time at the library, their time being read to will count.

This isn’t just a way to encourage reading among the population either. The libraries in Alberta are also competing to see which municipality will have the most residents log their time.

It is a competition Vandriel says she is desperate to win.

“I’ve already got a place all picked out for the trophy that I think it will look great, and show off how readerly our town is,” Vandriel said, adding the trophy and certificates handed out to the winners are some of” the most tacky awards ever.”

Vandriel has also attempted to convince staff at the library that the best way to get more people to read on Jan. 25 is to drive around town in a convertible and a blow horn. Though none of the staff have taken her up on the idea.

Vandriel will be doing her part to increase readership, though on a more global scale. During the event she will be in Uganda, building a library, and she plans to take time out of the busy day to read to children under a tree.

“I’ll make sure to read that day, and read to others, just in Uganda. I’ll be taking Read for 15 global.”

Taking part in the day-long event is easy, says Vandriel. After completing 15 minutes of reading call or email the library, or make a post on social media and be sure to tag the Sylvan Lake Municipal Library and use the hashtag #ReadFor15Sylvan.

Readers will also have the chance to win a prize for participating.

Read for 15 will be held on Jan. 25 at the local libraries.

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