Trained helpers are supporting children in Wandsworth nurseries as part of a Story Starters reading programme where volunteers from the local community visit schools twice a week.

Story Starters is collaborative project between children’s literacy charity Beanstalk, Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library and LuCid (University of Liverpool) which aims to help children aged three to five become ready to read.

Jan Thole is among the first Story Starter reading helpers, supporting three children one to one at Chesterton Nursery (part of Chesterton School) on Dagnall Street, Wandsworth.

She said: “I’m delighted to be a part of the first story starters programme in London and so warmly welcomed by Chesterton Nursery and Primary School. As a volunteer I work with three children twice a week. I welcome this opportunity to share my love of books and reading.”

To find out more about becoming a Story Starter reading helper, or to book a place at its next training and selection day in London on Wednesday April 11, visit: or email