The Universal Reading Offer
The Universal Reading Offer is a new strategy to keep the momentum going in hard times.
In the last ten years libraries have been modernising and evolving their reading services, with stunning results. They now offer a lively, social service to encourage reading for pleasure. Most effort has been focused on children's work, and children's book borrowing has risen for the last seven years. 77% of five to 10 year olds now use the library.
There's a big challenge in an age of austerity to keep up this momentum. We're working with libraries on a new strategy for 2012-15 called the Universal Reading Offer. Our partners in this are the Society of Chief Librarians. This:
- Focuses libraries' efforts on taking collective action by prioritising key programmes and partnerships.
- Gives libraries a ready made set of tools offering economies of scale and easy ways to share best practice.
- Helps retain the investment and resources arising from nationally brokered partnerships with the BBC, 40 publishers and others.
- Creates a shared evidence bank and advocacy resources to help libraries show how they make an impact.
These materials, developed for library professionals, outline the main elements of the strategy.