VANCOUVER Public Library is expanding a popular children’s literacy program and launching an all-new one next year, supported through a $90,000 donation from The Vancouver Sun’s Raise-a-Reader campaign.

VPL’s Man in the Moon program – an award-winning initiative supporting male caregivers in reading to their children – will expand to two more East Vancouver branches in 2014, making the sessions even more accessible. A new after-school reading and activity program is expected to kick off at two other eastside branches starting as early as January.

“Our community really values programs – such as Mother Goose and Man in the Moon – that support parents and caregivers in providing a healthy environment for early literacy and learning for children,” says Julie Iannacone, VPL’s Manager of Services for Children and Teens.

“With this generous funding from the Raise-a-Reader campaign, we are excited to be expanding our programming for children and families, and further supporting a culture of reading.”

Raise-a-Reader has been raising awareness and money for literacy since 1997 – since then it has raised nearly $7 million in Vancouver alone with B.C. government support – benefiting literacy organizations and literacy initiatives throughout the province.

“VPL leads vital literacy programs for children and families,” says Patricia Wu, Vancouver Sun’s manager of local marketing for Western Canada. “These programs are important, as they help build lifelong skills for their participants, which in turn positively impacts our community.

“The Vancouver Sun is extremely pleased to continue as a partner and an advocate for literacy with the Vancouver Public Library Foundation.”