She may at first be an unlikely hero, but when you think of it – her choice makes perfect sense. The author of the Harry Potter books, JK Rowling has been named among 10 others as heroes for their services to literacy.
The author is said to have turned a whole generation of children into readers. All the nominations have been chosen for their impact on communities reading and writing skills, or in some cases having overcome particular problems of their own.
The competition was launched by the Duchess of Cornwall who is a patron of the charity and their are many other notable nominations. Here’s a couple more -
- Lyn Hopson, from Doncaster, who runs schemes to promote a love of reading among young people
- Leeds teacher – Velda Jackson
- Richard O’Neill, a Romany gypsy author and storyteller who works in schools to improve literacy among traveller pupils
- English teacher Caroline Thain, from Aberdeen
As you can see it’s not a list of high powered authors and literary geniuses,just real people with real jobs who have inspired literacy in others by whatever means. All the nominations were in fact from the general public and then whittled down by a special panel including authors, business people and educators to name just a few of their roles.
There are talks to expand the nominations to organisations and even media sites, but these are not confirmed. For example many people have suggested that the literacy section of the BBC is worthy of mention plus the various educational programmes that are transmitted. Although it is difficult to access these from outside the UK – unless you use something like this - http://www.iplayerabroad.com/, so that would have to be considered.
The effective censorship of one of the world’s favorite broadcasters is unfortunate as it’s not really helpful to anyone outside the UK. Although people do use techniques to access these sites – for example check this video out which explains the process thoroughly.
The idea though is to keep commercialism out of these particular awards and perhaps focus on the everyday people who provide such a boost to literacy particularly to our younger generation.