The Malta Independent 30 May 2020, Saturday

Watch: Over 200 children in children’s homes to receive five books each

Albert Galea Wednesday, 20 May 2020, 12:15 Last update: about 8 days ago

Over 200 children living in 18 children’s residences across Malta and Gozo will receive an average of five books each as part of a new government initiative, Education Minister Owen Bonnici announced on Wednesday.

Speaking in a press conference at St. Joseph’s Home in Santa Venera, Bonnici said the initiative will spread the joy of reading to children and families who are most vulnerable, noting the difference that reading can make in one’s life.

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He said that over 200 children in 18 residential homes will receive an average of five books each, with the selection of books being catered according to the individual ages and interests of each child.

Minister for the Family, Children's Rights and Social Solidarity Michael Falzon spoke of the importance of literacy and reading in the modern world.  He noted with satisfaction the collaboration between the two ministries, and encouraged more children to delve into the world of books.

“In the world you can lose everything except for what you have learnt”, Falzon said.

Fr. Gigi Mallia, who is the director of St. Joseph’s Home, said that the books – of which his home will receive 110 – will play a key part of the programme that the residents at the home follow.

He said that they learn to do many things at the home, and that being a friend to knowledge is part of the adventure of children which will see them not only enjoy the present, but also the future.

Answering questions from journalists meanwhile, Bonnici reiterated that no decision had yet been taken with regards to the opening of childcare centres and Skolasajf, noting that they were in continued communication with health authorities in this regard.

Bonnici also said that there is a plan in place for how the coming weeks and months will work with regards to the education sector.

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