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Post People: Selling tall tales to boost Barking and Dagenham literacy

PUBLISHED: 09:53 27 March 2017 | UPDATED: 15:00 05 April 2017

Ella, from Chadwel Heath, hopes to help improve literacy in Barking and Dagenham by selling Usborne books to its children Picture: Reading Opens Doors

Ella, from Chadwel Heath, hopes to help improve literacy in Barking and Dagenham by selling Usborne books to its children Picture: Reading Opens Doors

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Mobile book seller Ella Inedia, 32, tells Sebastian Murphy-Bates how she’s helping improve literacy in children with her Reading Opens Doors project

“Selling children’s books at toddler groups and through Facebook is my way of trying to earn extra income and improve literacy while being a stay-at-home mum with three kids.

“Being a stay-at-home mum can make you feel isolated, but selling Usborne books for children I feel like part of a big family. I get to meet people and life doesn’t just pass me by.

“I used to work in construction for Network Rail, later I left to look after my first son. When I started my own construction business Raphael and Michael Homes Ltd, I had to take a break because I couldn’t work on site while pregnant with my third child.

“So I signed up with Usborne to sell their wide range of children’s books, from GCSE and A level help guides to coming-of-age fiction.

“These books have helped my five-year-old, Raphael, become an excellent reader and I’ve seen the progress my friends’ children have made too.

“But it wasn’t always so easy, my son had language gaps when he was three years old. It’s satisfying to know that we went through those problems for a reason and I can how tell other people how to deal with them so it’s easier for them than it was for us.

“I think people are forgetting about reading entirely – most kids and a lot of adults these days sit in front of the television because children model themselves on what they’ve been taught.

“And people are strapped for time, which is partly due to this economy and the amount of people working two jobs. All they want to do when they get home is relax in front of the television, which means they don’t get quality time with their children through reading them stories.

“I’ve nothing against television but reading really must be encouraged as much as possible.

“If you read to your children when they’re young, you don’t have to force them to do their homework or pick up a book when they start school – they come to you and demand a good read.”

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