What we do

Reading Friends brings people together to read, share stories, meet new friends and have fun. We use reading – whether books, magazines, newspapers, or anything else – to start everyone chatting.

Reading Friends is The Reading Agency’s reading connection programme which connects people by starting conversations through reading, giving opportunities to meet others, share stories, make new friends and have fun. 

We work with local community partners and volunteers to build social connections in groups and one-to-one. Together, we are reaching people who are vulnerable, isolated and at risk of loneliness. Find out about the difference the programme has made through stories from our projects and through our evaluation reports.

Reading Friends was developed in 2017 with funding from the National Lottery Community Fund and expanded in 2021 through public libraries in England with funding from the Department of Culture, Media and Sport.

The Reading Agency is a UK charity with a mission to empower people of all ages to read. Evidence shows that reading improves health and wellbeing, life chances and social connections. The Reading Agency champions access to the proven power of reading by providing activities for all ages. Working with public libraries, prisons, hospitals and other community settings, we reach over two million people a year. But with a UK population of over 67 million that’s not nearly enough. We want to get more people fired up about reading because everything changes when you read.

The Reading Agency

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