On 13 November DG Gary Langford had the privilege to attend a presentation of 280 Usborne illustrated English dictionaries to students at Finlayson Park Primary School in Manurewa, the largest decile 1 school in the country.  He witnessed joy and smiles all around and was made aware again of the great effort the Bill and Lorna Boyd Charitable Trust, the Pakuranga Rotary Club and its auxiliary, are making to improve literacy standards.  Also assisting the purchase in this instance was the June Gray Charitable Trust, administered by the Newmarket Rotary Club.
The Bill and Lorna Boyd Charitable Trust (the Trust) was formed to commemorate Bill Boyd's appointment to the office of Rotary World  President in 2006 and has been heavily involved in the supply of Usborne illustrated English dictionaries to Year 4 students (8 to 9 year olds) in decile 1 schools since 2009.  The Usborne books are first supplied to their New Zealand agents Harper Collins Limited which on sells them to the Trust.  To date the Trust has distributed (again by on selling) through Rotary clubs throughout New Zealand, close to 200,000 books estimated to have a retail value of approximately NZ$6 million.  Recently the Trust has added to its literacy library of books available; a book with flash cards for  new entrants to primary schools called Rhyming around the Alphabet.  These are now available through the Trust. The books were published by Wendy Pye Publishing Ltd. and the Trust was assisted in the purchase by the Trillion Trust.
The project, which is an on-going one every year, fits well with Rotary International’s worldwide goal of ‘literacy development’.  It has the support of all the district governors throughout NZ. As expected not only is the dictionary being used by the Year 4 students, but that, by getting it into their homes, Mums and Dads come to use it as well. It is a great literacy aid in homes where reference books are often few and far between.  This is another great Pakuranga Rotary project.  It has helped tens of thousands of children throughout the country as well as many in the Pacific Islands.