News Story

Church and Schools Partner to Improve Children's Literacy

In April 2011, representatives of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints travelled by boat from Fiji’s capital, Suva, to the island of Bau.  They brought with them 26 boxes of children’s books to give to the school on the island. 

Eighteen months on, the books are being used regularly and enthusiastically by students and teachers according to Mrs Sulueti Kama, National Director of Public Affairs for the Church in Fiji. 

“The children are reaping benefits from having a much larger supply of reading and reference books,” she said.

There are 170 children who attend the school on Bau Island.  When a group of students were asked recently if they were enjoying the books, the children shouted in unison, “Yes!” 

Principal Jolame Waqa says the books have been a blessing in the lives of the children.

Each school day the students read from 8:30 a.m. to 9:00 a.m., according to Mr Waqa.  “The children have developed a love for reading,” he said.  

Mr Waqa also said that the books have helped the children to develop skills needed to improve in other subjects such as spelling, mathematics and science. 

The books were donated by members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and others in the community, in New Zealand and Fiji.  

A further 45,000 books were subsequently donated, sorted, shipped and distributed to approximately 80 remote schools throughout Fiji in late 2011 and early 2012.

Read more about the 'Books for Fiji' project. Watch a video about the project.

Style Guide Note:When reporting about The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, please use the complete name of the Church in the first reference. For more information on the use of the name of the Church, go to our online Style Guide.