The Literature Centre in Fremantle has entered into a new partnership with BHP Billiton which will involve the mining company investing $600,000 in the centre over three years.
The Literature Centre marketing and sponsorship manager Nicole Clarke told Bookseller+Publisher that the new partnership, which was formally announced in May, is the centre’s ‘first partnership and commitment of this nature from the corporate sector’ and both parties ‘are thrilled to be working together’.
The new funding is intended to help the centre continue its current metropolitan schools program, as well as extend its programs into regional areas in Western Australia. The regional programs will include quarterly visits to Port Hedland and Newman to deliver the centre’s ‘Talented Young Writers Program’ of workshops with well-known authors. The program already visits schools in Fremantle, Bunbury, Albany and Geraldton.
The centre will also use funds from the new partnership for National Year of Reading 2012 events in Port Hedland and Newman with 2012 Australian Children’s Laureate Boori Monty Pryor.
BHP Billiton’s head of community and Indigenous affairs Richard O’Connell said in a statement in May that the partnership ‘encourages students in Perth and the Pilbara to unlock their own individual potential’. ‘At BHP Billiton we’ve seen the remarkably positive impacts these kind of programs can deliver,’ said O’Connell. ‘We know that literacy is more than just reading for reading’s sake. It opens minds and presents opportunities for young people.’
The Literature Centre, formerly known as Fremantle Children’s Literature Centre, was established in 1992. More information about the programs offered by the centre can be found online here.