Read to Lead

“The most inspiring and enjoyable time I have spent on a course and I can see many places I can use the skills learned.”

Join the Shared Reading movement by enrolling in our inspiring learning programme.

Since 2008 The Reader has pioneered the use of Shared Reading to improve group members’ well-being, reduce social isolation and build resilience in communities across the UK and beyond.

We inspire and support people to read great literature aloud together. This simple idea changes lives and builds communities. At the heart of each group is you, a trained facilitator whose Shared Reading story begins with Read to Lead.

Read to Lead is an inspiring programme that equips you with the confidence, skills and insight to lead a  Shared Reading group. During this enriching experience, you will understand how Reader Leaders create the special atmosphere of care and connection which characterises our groups. You’ll also develop confidence in your own reading, and discover the power of literature to forge powerful bonds between individuals. And of course, you’ll connect to a network of other Reader Leaders, people who are setting out with you on this journey, changing the world, one page at a time.

Chapter One – Initial Training

Read to Lead begins with a series of invigorating and thought-provoking sessions, delivered either intensively over three-days, or flexibly over a period of weeks. During the initial training you will:

  • experience the joy of Shared Reading first-hand and develop an understanding of how it can change lives.
  • learn key techniques and behaviours that underpin Shared Reading and have the opportunity to practice these personally.
  • develop reading, facilitation and communication skills that will enhance life beyond Shared Reading delivery.

Chapter Two – Ongoing Support

After your initial training you’ll be part of a growing Reader family, working together to build the Shared Reading movement and we hope you’ll feel ready to start your own group.

Your training will continue with a refresher workshop and ongoing support where you’ll be connected to a wider network of Reader Leaders – like-minded people with a love of literature.

You’ll get a toolkit of materials to help you run your Shared Reading group including our Starter for 10 and A Little, Aloud anthologies as well as a subscription to The Reader magazine. You’ll also have access to an online portal providing useful tools and tips for running your group.

Why Read to Lead?

Read to Lead is an exhilarating and fascinating process that teaches innovative and transferable leadership and facilitation skills while developing your communication and interpersonal skills.

A powerful tool for personal reflection as well as improving well-being, Read to Lead will also equip you to deliver a group in your choice of setting – whether it’s a hospital, your workplace, a care home or your local library.


Read to Lead includes initial training and ongoing support:

  • £750 per person

Bespoke courses are available to commission for a minimum of eight people.


If you’re interested in becoming a volunteer for The Reader, find out more about fully-funded opportunities with projects in London, the North West and South West here.

Start your Shared Reading story

Forthcoming Read to Lead initial training sessions:

International Read to Lead

Tuesday 10 / Wednesday 11 / Thursday 12 September 2019
The Reader Mansion House, Calderstones Park, Liverpool L18 3JB

Tuesday 21 / Wednesday 22 / Thursday 23 January 2020
The Reader Mansion House, Calderstones Park, Liverpool L18 3JB

Tuesday 2 / Wednesday 3 / Thursday 4 June 2020
The Reader Mansion House, Calderstones Park, Liverpool L18 3JB

Get in touch and be part of the story 0151 729 2200

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