Nearly 300 students celebrate a love of books in Reading Ahead challenge - CCCG
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Nearly 300 students celebrate a love of books in Reading Ahead challenge

Around 300 students at two Capital City College Group (CCCG) colleges have shown a real passion for reading after completing this year’s Reading Ahead Challenge.

Nearly 300 students celebrate a love of books in Reading Ahead challenge

Reading Ahead aims to encourage reading by challenging participants to read six books, poems or articles and write a reading diary sharing their thoughts on what they have read.

A total of 215 students from the College of Haringey, Enfield and North East London (CONEL) and 78 from City and Islington College (CANDI) completed the challenge run by the Reading Agency.

The students who took part were from English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) and Functional Skills in English courses or the colleges’ Supported Learning provision.

Each CONEL student who completed the challenge was presented with a certificate of achievement and a book with four of them being entered into a prize draw to win a £20 voucher.

ESOL student Shahrbanoo Jafarian, 48, who moved to the UK from Iran in 2021, said: “I wanted to do this challenge because I want to learn English perfectly.

“The challenge and my ESOL course have helped me to improve my English, which will give me confidence to help me find a good job and have a better social life.

“I want to learn and read more. I want to join this challenge again. It has really inspired me.”

Nearly 300 students celebrate a love of books in Reading Ahead challenge

Mayor of Islington, Cllr Gary Heather, congratulated students from CANDI who completed the challenge and presented them with certificates and £10 vouchers at Islington Central Library.

CANDI students also said that taking part in the challenge had improved and given the more confidence in their English with some saying they now enjoyed reading to their families.

CANDI Library Team Leaders Simon Nelson and Lucy Hallworth praised the students on their achievement and commitment to the challenge.

Lucy said: “I’m thrilled to see the hugely positive impact the Reading Ahead challenge has had on our participating students’ learning and personal development. It’s fantastic to see the students’ great achievements celebrated. I hope that they will continue to love reading and spread the word on how enjoyable and fulfilling recreational reading is.”

Pavla Jonasova, Curriculum Manager for ESOL at CONEL, said: “Reading Ahead really helps our students with their literacy skills. There is no obligation for them to do it, but we really encourage them to get involved. You can tell those that have done the challenge because it really reflects when it comes to their vocabulary and their reading and writing skills.

“Most importantly those that do participate really enjoy it. It’s great to see so many have completed the challenge this year. I’m very proud of them. They have all done fantastically well.”

The Reading Agency is a national charity that inspires people to read more and promotes the benefits of reading in libraries, colleges and other community settings.

Find out more about ESOL, English and Maths and Supported Learning courses and programmes and apply here.


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