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Better with a Book: The Reader Organisation’s National Conference 2014

Written by Lisa Spurgin, 7th March 2014

Audience WEBThe Reader Organisation’s National Conference 2014
‘Better with a Book: Exploring the Relationship between Literature and Mental Health’
9am-4.30pm, Thursday 15th May 2014
British Library Conference Centre, Euston Road, London, NW1 2DB

The Reader Organisation’s fifth annual national conference will explore how our shared reading model uses literature to improve mental health, reduce social isolation and enhance quality of life.

Shared reading groups currently take place every week in health, criminal justice, community, and education settings across the UK, providing individuals with the tools to transform their relationship to themselves and one another.

“Literature and poetry have helped me to cope with what is going on in my life” - shared reading group member

Academic research into The Reader Organisation’s projects has demonstrated statistically significant improvements in the mental health of those suffering mild to moderate depression, reduced agitation for those suffering with dementia, and improved emotional, social and educational wellbeing for women in prison.

This conference offers an opportunity for commissioners, practitioners and professionals from all sectors to examine the impact of shared reading on individuals, communities and organisations.

Confirmed Speakers include:

  • Lord Melvyn Bragg, writer, broadcaster and former President of MIND
  • Baroness Estelle Morris, former Secretary of State for Education, and Dr Alice Sullivan, Institute for Education, discussing the role of reading in schools
  • Nick Benefield, former NHSE PD Advisor and Joint Head NSHE/NOMS Offender PD Team, and Lord Alan Howarth, All Party Parliamentary Group for Arts, Health and Wellbeing, discussing the effect of shared reading in secure mental health settings.

Booking information

Full day delegate, including lunch and refreshments - £140

Book your place online:

Alternatively, you can pay by cheque or invoice. Head to our website to download a booking form and return, with your payment, to Abigail Leader: or send to The Reader Organisation, The Friary Centre, Bute Street, Liverpool, L5 3LA

For queries or further information, please contact Abigail: or call 0151 207 7221

Follow @thereaderorg and hashtag #betterwithabook for the latest conference updates.

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