Reading Enrichment Programme (REP) Literacy Volunteers
Founded by Penrose Rotary in 1997 at One Tree Hill College, this literacy mentoring initiative has recently expanded into three local high schools; Otahuhu College, Wesley College and Pacific Advance Secondary School. Bay of Islands College and Papatoetoe High School are introducing REP in 2019.
Literacy levels are a serious barrier for many students and young people struggling with the transition to high school can get left behind. Penrose Rotary identified an untapped resource of active retirees who are keen to contribute in their communities and become engaged at a personal level.
The model, REP is a 1:1 mentoring programme, funded and developed under Penrose Rotary’s direction, by experienced teaching professionals. REP has been very favourably reviewed by ERO and continues to produce annual results that show solid literacy gains, as well as a marked increase in confidence for all students who participate. Well-tested, the programme is simple and easy to adopt. REP continues to be led and funded through the Rotary Club of Penrose and a large number of Donor organisations.
The cost of running REP in each new school is negligible. Schools provide the resource box, an attractive classroom and a teacher supervisor from their Learning Support team. Each programme requires a volunteer tutor coordinator who works with the local Rotary Club to identify and recruit Mentors from local communities.
The coordinator is the liaison with the school and Rotary Club. There is no cost to the local Rotary Club
Students love the programme and comment on the “roomful of smiles” when they arrive in the classroom.
They revel in the opportunity to engage with a tutor who is interested in them, without stress or pressure in a fun, supportive environment. Tutors love the programme, because they know they are making a difference with each conversation they have. It feels safe, it’s fun and they meet other interesting adults.
REP is robust and sustainable, because it plays to the strengths of both schools and communities, with a strong team ethos that provides back-up at all times, so no-one is asked to do too much. 
REP schools and community coordinators form a collaborative network, to maximize growth and strength of the programme, while the Rotary Club of Penrose fulfils the governance role.
Penrose Rotary requests that when a Rotary Club gets approached about introducing REP into a local high school, that they distribute flyers to their members who are likely to know someone who would welcome the opportunity to engage with a young person in a safe classroom, for a couple of hours each week.
Contact 2021-2022:
Ann Dunphy   
Phone: 021 684 498
Rotary Club:  Penrose               
  • https://onetreehillcollege
  • One Tree Hill College website LINK ‘Our School’…… ‘Rotary Enrichment Programme’