Kids take one giant leap into libraries!

Libraries Minister, Nelson McCausland, launched this year’s Summer Reading Challenge, on behalf of Libraries NI, at Finaghy Library on Wednesday 23rd June, with a little help from the pupils of Finaghy Primary School.

The Summer Reading Challenge takes place from Saturday 26th June – Saturday 4th September, and aims to keep children reading throughout the school summer holidays. This year’s theme is ‘Space Hop’ which is designed to create a ‘buzz’ around reading and all Northern Ireland libraries are preparing to launch children’s imaginations into orbit through this intergalactic book adventure.

The Challenge is simple – Children are encouraged to read six or more books of their choice during the holidays with collectable incentives and rewards, plus a certificate or medal for every child who completes the Challenge.

Speaking at the launch, Minister McCausland said:

“The Summer Reading Challenge continues to go from strength to strength every year. This exciting initiative not only encourages our children to read and enjoy books but also promotes quality time and interaction between parents, carers and children. Libraries play a vital role in the development of our children and I would encourage all parents and carers to bring their children along to their local library to take up this challenge.”

The Summer Reading Challenge is an immensely popular and successful reading initiative. Now in its twelfth year, it is created by The Reading Agency, which is an independent charity working to inspire more people to read more.

Libraries NI Chief Executive, Irene Knox explains:

“Research shows that children really enjoy taking part in the Summer Reading Challenge, which is a great way to keep children entertained over the holidays. More importantly, it has been proven that children who take part in the Challenge read more books and read more widely than those who don’t, with potentially life-changing results.”

Northern Ireland Libraries are inviting children age 4 – 11, parents and carers to participate in this year’s Challenge from Saturday 26th June – Saturday 4th September.

An interactive Space Hop ( website has just been launched, linking children with top authors and illustrators, and giving them space to talk about their favourite books and to share reading ideas.

To find our more about events planned around the Summer Reading Challenge, contact any Northern Ireland library or go to the Libraries NI events website at