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Reading Friends

The Times Christmas Appeal 2019: read all the stories so far...

Written by Alison Blaxland
04 December 2019

This Christmas, The Reading Agency has been chosen as one of the charities to feature in The Times Christmas Appeal for 2019. The Appeal will focus on the charity’s work to tackle life’s big challenges, such as loneliness and isolation, through the proven power of reading. Follow the links below to read the articles which feature stories from our Reading Friends programme:

1. Power of books brings memories back to life

“When he comes to Reading Friends you see a spark of my dad as I know him, the very essence of him seems to return.” Oldham, Greater Manchester

2. The highlight of the week for patients and staff alike

“It helped me to realise that it’s not the end of the world having a stroke, that it’s not the end of my life.” Singleton Hospital, Swansea

3. Pensioners bond over today’s hot topic — life before fridges

“We always have such fun. After every meeting I go home on a high.” Rustington library, West Sussex 

4. Books breathe life into dances, donkeys and days at the beach

“After reading together we are friends now.” Conwy, Wales

5. “Mum would have loved someone to read her a book”

“She would have loved people to come and chat to her and always loved reading.” Jacqueline Wilson, author and The Reading Agency ambassador

6. Chatting (and arguing) about books can start a new chapter

‘Reading Friends provides company and solidarity at what could have been for many of its members, a very lonely time of life.’  Newcastle Library

7. Reading scheme is a novel way of bridging the generation gap

“It has given me my hobby and my life back.” Stirling Library, Scotland

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