Bookbug for the Home Heads to Holyrood

Bookbug infographic family on a sofa with book
Category: Bookbug

I’ve been thinking about all the wonderful partnerships that have been formed as a result of Bookbug Outreach, and the proverb “it takes a village to raise a child” seems especially true. Bookbug for the Home, like the wider Bookbug programme, has grown and developed with help from so many people across Scotland.

At the launch of our latest evaluation a few weeks ago, we welcomed people through the doors of the Scottish Parliament to help us celebrate the stories that have come out of Bookbug for the Home so far.

At Bookbug we love illustrations as much as words, so we commissioned some colourful new infographics to show the highlights of the evaluation. Have a look on our updated Bookbug Outreach pages to view these, download the executive summary and read stories of families whose lives have been changed by Bookbug for the Home.

For those who prefer the written word, we’re delighted to report that:

  • The programme has now trained over 3,000 professionals who work with vulnerable families, using activities which encourage greater interaction between parents and children and promote bonding, attachment, social skills and literacy in the early years.
  • 99% of practitioners using Bookbug for the Home said that these sessions were effective at encouraging parents to do more talking, singing, rhyming and book sharing with their children
  • Early years professionals using Bookbug for the Home helped more and more families each year. In 2012 it was 2.7 families per practitioner, now it’s 10.7.
  • That means that over 14,000 families have experienced Bookbug for the Home activities in the last four years.
  • Bookbug for the Home is being used by a wide range of people for a wider range of reasons. It’s helping families who are facing substance misuse problems, families whose children are accommodated, families lacking in confidence, families that have experienced trauma, families with children who have delayed speech or behavioural problems, and families that require support to interact with their children, including in prison settings.

And to the supporters and ones who make it happen: We quite simply couldn’t have got this far without you.

Thank you to the foster carer who decided to give the fluffy yellow guy a go with her child who couldn’t yet use his voice.

Over 14,000 families have experienced Bookbug for the Home activities in the last four years

Thanks to the local co-ordinator who uses her expertise to forge new links and tirelessly introduce reading to the littlest members of her community.

Thanks to the author and illustrator who lovingly shared their words and pictures with the world.

Thanks to the social worker who brings Bookbug along with him so that there is a little bit of joy amongst the paperwork and difficult conversations.

Thanks to the library that opens its doors to all the buggies and gives families a welcoming safe space to meet, read, and learn – for free.

Thank you to the volunteer who coaxes a nursery rhyme from someone who did not get loving eye contact when she was a baby herself.

Thanks to the van driver and warehouse manager who make sure the bairns get their books.

Thank you, thank you, thank you to the Bookbug Session Leader who rhymes, reads, repeats, every week so that the babies (and adults!) have a chance to catch the words.

Thanks to the manager who releases staff for training, and allows them to build stories and songs into their everyday practice.

Thanks to the health visitor who comes bearing the gift of books, and patiently shows mum that her new baby is listening to every word of the story, long before she can talk.

Thank you to the publisher for pulling out all the stops to make a book that will be treasured for years to come.

Thanks to the government for placing our youngest citizens at the top of their plans and knowing that time and money for books and songs and rhymes and cuddles make for a stronger nation.

Thank you to the nursery practitioner who shows parents that you don’t even need to be good at reading to share a story with your child.

Thanks to the librarian who pulls on his Bookbug t-shirt and shows dads and grandads that they are welcome too.

Thanks to the child for growing, imagining, watching, exploring, chatting, and dreaming through stories, learning to be readers and writers, and making our work worthwhile.

Thanks to all of you and all you represent.

So it’s absolutely true, so many people have helped make this beautiful, friendly, vitally important programme what it is today, and boy, are we pleased to have you in Bookbug’s “village”.