Islamabad—The United States Agency for International Development (USAID) held a ceremony marking the successful completion of 18 small grants encouraging children to develop the skill and habit of reading from an early age.
“We received a record number of outstanding applications for grants to carry out reading activities at the community level,” said Natasha de Marcken, Director of the USAID Pakistan Education Office.
Natasha said “the grants helped to engage parents in activities that will strengthen children’s reading ability and reinforce a habit of reading for pleasure and life-long learning.”
The grants, provided through USAID’s Pakistan Reading Project, supported small activities lasting three months. The Government Girls Primary School in University Town, Karachi implemented parent-teacher meetings, engaged parents as volunteer story-tellers, and established a young-reader prize through its grant. “The enrollment in our school has increased remarkably after this intervention,” said Government Girls Primary School head teacher Mussarat Khan adding that “parents are telling us that their children get up early in the morning and are excited to go to school.”
The USAID-funded Pakistan Reading Project supports provincial and regional education departments across Pakistan to improve the reading skills of children in early primary grades.