Corio-Norlane , Victoria

About the community

The Geelong Let’s Read Community focuses on two primary locations: The Corio-Norlane-North Shore areas and the Newcomb-Whittington areas. The Corio/Norlane community is in the north of Geelong. As a result of industry closures in 2016, families have less work options in the local area. Both the Corio/ Norlane and the Newcomb/ Whittington areas rely on the support of a variety of services due to the low income levels of many residents. Education programs are a key component to supporting community needs. Let’s Read has been delivered in Corio/Norlane for a number of years in various forms, however the inclusion of the Newcomb/Whittington area is a new expansion of the program.


Corio-Norlane and the Let's Read program

The Let’s Read program in Geelong has been supported through the Corio/Norlane ‘Best Start’ committee, engaging services through the City of Greater Geelong and through other local community organisations. These include the Local Corio Library, Maternal and Child Health Services, Kindergarten’s, Child Care Centre’s, a Family Centre and a number of local Playgroups.


Community stories

Let's Read dual language book Library created in Geelong

The Lets Read Program supports reading for pre-school children in the Corio/Norlane community. As part of Geelong’s ‘Give Where You Live’ funding for 2017, the Let's Read program has been able to support the Northern Bay Family Centre and Early Learning Centre & Kinder to purchase special dual language books because of the growing number of non-English speaking families in the 3214 community. These wonderful stories are in English and also in another native language so that parent and child can read together.

This donation is on top of an initial local donation by Geelong's Dimmicks Charitable Trust, to ensure there will be up to 100 books for families to access.  Brad Roylance, the Smith Family Program Coordinator in Geelong, has been working with the two Centres. ‘A fantastic shared dual language book library has been created where kinder groups can come and participate in reading, and where families can borrow the books and enjoy reading them together at home.

Bradley Roylance, Program Coordinator | The Smith Family


Wathuarong Aboriginal Co-op, Kinder & School Transition day, 2016

The Geelong Learning for Life team and two volunteers participated in an event this week to support the transition of indigenous youngsters into Corio school and kinder programs for 2017.

The day was aimed to give local indigenous families a great start to the school year by promoting a number of health and education supporting organisation in the community.  The day also offered some fun education activities for children to take part in.  The local Program Coordinator, Brad Roylance, worked with the Wathuarong Aboriginal Cooperative and community organisations to support planning and resourcing on the day.  The Geelong office donated library bags made by VIEW members, stationary for Preps & Lego donations for the children. On the day, children read books and played with Lego while parents discussed with the Let’s Read trained volunteers, the value of reading and developing literacy skills with their children in readiness for school and kinder.

Let’s Read will be rolled out to parents at the Wathuarong Aboriginal Cooperative Play Group and Kinder during early 2017.  Parents were encouraged to visit the local Library in Corio who is also offing the Let’s Read program to all local parents of pre-school aged children. Wathuarong contact Kristy was happy with the family turn out for the event despite some hot weather, and admits that given families all stayed longer than expected to participate in all the activities, if numbers increase further nest year then the venue would need to be bigger to accommodate the interest!

Brad Roylance | Program Coordinator | The Smith Family

March 2015

Glastonbury Community Services are delivering Let’s Read via their HIPPY program and have had lots of success, with 52 families participating in the program receiving literacy information, support books and resources from Corio and Norlane this year.

One of our HIPPY tutors has been working with a family who never read to their children, with both the mother and father having quite low literacy skills and comprehension. Whilst the HIPPY tutor was delivering HIPPY subject material for the 5 year old child, she also took along the ‘Where’s my Teddy’ Let’s Read book for the 3 year old sibling along with the tip sheet. The tutor read the book to the father, talking about how he doesn’t have to read every word, just talk about the pictures and the ensuing story. The tutor also modelled this style of storytelling with the child.

When the tutor returned for the next visit two weeks later the father stated that his little fella loves the book and has started saying “the big bear and the little bear” and is now insisting on a bedtime story every night before bed.

Shae Coatswort | Best Start Project Officer | Family Services


The funding for the Let’s Read program in Geelong comes from the ‘Give Where You Live’ (GWYL) organisation in Geelong. Thanks to GWYL for supporting this great initiative in the community.


Key contact

The Smith Family