28 May 2024

Reading course opens up a new world for non-reader

Gary Green staged a surprise party on Saturday (11th May) for friends, family and colleagues to celebrate becoming the first Salisbury graduate of literacy charity Read Easy.

The party in The Pheasant came 19 months after Gary, aged 52, started working with Sara Crook, a Coach with South and East Wiltshire Read Easy.

Gary, a machine operator with Argus Fluidhandling Ltd on Churchfield Industrial Estate, found school difficult because he could not read.

After leaving school in 1989 with no qualifications, he accepted his inability to read as part of his life.

But in 2022, he had an epiphany when he decided to learn to read. With the help of a colleague, he contacted Read Easy.

With Sara, Gary worked through all five Turning Pages manuals, published by the literacy charity Shannon Trust, and completed the last one on 30th April this year.

Sara Crook and Gary Green at Alabaré, where they held their two half-hour sessions every week.

Before starting, he could still barely read, but now he reads magazines and papers, books—his favourite author is Stephen King—and is reading Winnie the Pooh with his niece. He now hopes to pass his driving test and can also use computers.

He says learning to read has made him more confident and relaxed, and he borrows books from Salisbury Library weekly.

He is proud of his achievement and now wants to promote the course to others as an ambassador for Read Easy.

Read Easy, which has been running in South and East Wiltshire for two years, is a volunteer organisation that provides free and confidential one-to-one reading coaching for adults.

If you know someone who would like to learn to read, volunteer or find out more, call 07942 382318, email sewrecruiter@readeasy.org.uk or visit Read Easy South & East Wiltshire – ReadEasy

Written by
Andy Munns
View all articles
Written by Andy Munns