Bristol Sport Foundation reveals impact of its Reading Recovery programme

The Covid-19 pandemic has had a significant impact on the reading and literacy levels of young people throughout the country. Reading Recovery, a collaborative project between Bristol Sport Foundation (BSF) and its various corporate partners helps primary school children aged between 7 and 11 improve their literacy skills by giving them time to practice reading ‘one to one’ with a volunteer adult.

BSF has recently released a deep-dive impact report for the 2020/2021 Reading Recovery Programme that looks at the positive influence that the volunteering of our employees has had on five wards of Greater Bristol.

The report identifies some of the key outcomes from the programme such as improved literacy skills, improved confidence in reading and a renewed love of reading amongst the participants and highlights headline stats:

  • Together we delivered 256 hours of voluntary reading time.
  • The initiative was delivered in 5 wards of Bristol.
  • 38 children were mentored for a minimum of 6 weeks.
  • We donated 458 books to families across Greater Bristol who did not have access to books at home.
  • 5 Kindle devices donated to vulnerable families in Patchway.

Alan Walters, Headteacher at Coniston Primary School, hailed the impact of the mentoring: “Reading Recovery has been a huge success here at Coniston Primary School. The children who have taken part in the programme have thoroughly enjoyed it and the impact has been staggering. 

“We chose children who lacked confidence, not only as readers, but also within the classroom environment. The input from the reading ‘buddies’ is caring, encouraging and makes the children feel valued.

“The time they have invested in the children has increased their confidence and enhanced their love of reading. I cannot speak highly enough of the programme, the people involved and the impact it has had on the children at my school.” 

To access the full report, please click here and to find out more about Reading Recovery, please contact BSF by emailing