You can change a child's STORY

As a Bookmark volunteer, you can help a child develop the literacy skills they need to succeed in school and beyond.

During our six-week programme, you'll visit a local primary school twice a week for one-to-one, 30-minute reading sessions. By supporting the same child throughout each session you will be able to get to know their interests and see the progress they are making.

You can use your creativity to inspire your reader, exploring a range of resources that help them to gain confidence and find enjoyment in reading. 

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Apply to volunteer

Once you have read the Bookmark Reading Volunteer role description here, click below to apply.
You can also come back to this button to complete your application at any time. For any questions, check out our FAQs or email us at applications@bookmarkreading.org.

why volunteer

More than one in four children leave primary school unable to read to the expected standard. These children can struggle for the rest of their lives.

Bookmark volunteers have a huge impact on the children they support!

You will be able to:

  • Help children who struggle with their reading gain essential skills at a crucial age. This will prepare them to move up the school ready to tackle new challenges without falling further behind. 

  • Make learning to read fun by bringing your own personality into the sessions and getting to know your reader’s interests. It’s amazing when you introduce a book, comic or poem for the first time that they love! 

  • Use resources from the Bookmark Box. One of these is kept at each of our partner schools and is packed full of amazing literacy games, designed to help your reader learn through play, whist extending their vocabulary.


Flexible Sessions
On the Bookmark app, you can match with a school in your local area, give feedback on how it’s going, and arrange sessions at time and dates that work for you. Check out the app now by downloading it from the App Store. You can get full access to it once you’ve finished the onboarding process.

Receive training and learn new skills
We provide initial training, including six chapters, which cover everything from how to help early readers discuss books to safeguarding. This is a great chance for personal development, whether you’re looking to work with children, build your CV, or support the local community. You can change a child’s story.

Join the community
Volunteers can share tips and stories on our online forum and meet like-minded people at Bookmark’s regular events. Your community manager is available to answer any questions you have along the way and will also check in with you at the start and end of every programme. 

Enrich your week
Taking time out of your day to read with a child can help to support your own well-being by adding a new experience to your week. Discussing books with a young person can change your perspective and it is also a great excuse to revisit your favourite childhood reads.

Safeguarding and other information

Ensuring the safety of children and volunteers is at the heart of what we do. You can find our Safeguarding, Safer Recruitment and other policies relating to the Bookmark Reading Volunteer role here. We have also collated all the important information for our Bookmark Reading Volunteers in our volunteer information pack.

I’m excited to be able to give something back by helping kids to develop a keen interest in books. This has been really fun, especially since the kids enjoy making funny animal noises when sounding those words out in books like ‘The Ugly Duckling.’
— Safae, Bookmark volunteer