Your Child’s Future is an Open Book “Precious Minds: Nurturing Literacy in the Early Years”

It was a hollywood style party for the Kiwanis Club of Ottawa on Friday, October 27, as they unveiled the "Precious Minds" video for the first time to the general public. The room was electrically charged with 100 Kiwanians and the additional 150 high-profile guests from the Ottawa area in attendance. Some of the guests included high ranking Government officials, Educational System executives, child health and welfare organizations, caregivers and several politicians.

The Kiwanis members were very proud of their accomplishment after seeing such a wide spectrum of interest and representation from their community. The movie's theme focused on recent science discoveries that have shown that reading to children between the ages of 0 to 3 can help them realize the full potential of their brain.

This concept was based on the ground breaking report, "Early Years Study:, by Margaret Norrie McCain and Dr. J. Fraser Mustard, who concluded that "early child development is as important, if not more important than the periods children spend in education or post-secondary education".

The research revealed that children who are read to when exceptionally young, are more likely to develop a lifelong interest in reading, do well in school, and succeed in adult life. The move is full of tips and practical ways for parents and caregivers to promote early literacy. The new discoveries in brain research are a wake-up call for adults everywhere.

The movie exceeded expectations of all the children's organizations and community stakeholders who were in attendance. The movie will now offer a valuable tool from which they can promote the mandates and objectives of their organizations. The video was produced and filmed by General Assembly in Ottawa and directed by the famous and award winning Bob Callaghan - "this is one of the heartwarming videos I've produced". The cast consisted of several young families from the Ottawa Carleton region who were spontaneous, enjoyable and demonstrated real life drama. Over seven hours of video were used to create this 20-minute video.

A creative and powerful advertising campaign will begin early next week with posters, brochures and the website http://www. preciousminds.org. The organizing committee had sold over 4,000 copies of the movie before it was released. They hope to sell over 10,000 per year in the Ottawa Carleton area alone.

Copies of the video will be available for special promotion to Kiwanis members for a limited time only. For $10.00 members can pick up a copy at the Friday luncheons before Christmas. This video will make an excellent gift for parents, caregivers, or people who are interested in improving the quality of life of young children.

Derek Finley Member of the Board of Directors and Campaign Coordinator: Early Literacy Project