Caroline Dinenage MP has welcomed an exciting new partnership between ‘We CAN Read’ and Gosport Jobcentre Plus.

Gosport and Fareham based charity ‘We Can Read’, which helps adults develop their literacy skills, will now be operating a desk at the Jobcentre in Gosport High Street on Tuesday mornings, between 10am and 12 noon. This will enable Jobcentre staff to refer non-readers on to ‘We CAN read’ directly, alleviating the anxiety many people feel waiting for their first appointment.

‘We CAN Read’, which is run entirely by volunteers, uses a fun phonics programme to develop reading skills. The programme provides one-to-one coaching, and is ideal for anyone who has received inadequate reading tuition in the past. The organisation has been active for nearly six years, and has helped 70 local adults to read over this period. Linda Curtis, who coordinates the organisation’s Gosport-based volunteers, has described the partnership as ‘a huge breakthrough’ in tackling barriers non-readers face to securing employment.

Commenting, Caroline said: ‘I have been a passionate advocate of ‘We CAN Read’ for many years now, and am thrilled that this new collaboration will enable more local people to access their support. Improved literacy not only opens doors to employment, but also improves self-confidence and increases independence. Taking the first step towards better reading skills can be daunting, so ensuring that support services are easily available is really important. I look forward to following the progress of this exciting new partnership.’