Friday 14 April 2017



  • Kids Read is a global program developed by British Council and sponsored by HSBC since 2011 in 10 Middle Eastern and North African countries as well as 7 countries in Asia.
  • Kids Read was launched in 2015 in Binh Duong Province, Vietnam . In 2016, the project was implemented in Hanoi and will be conducted in Ho Chi Minh City this year with the support and cooperation with Ho Chi Minh City Department of Education and Training.
  • Around 36 teachers and nearly 4000 pupils in 6 primary schools in Ho Chi Minh City will participate in the project with activities including teacher training, reading sessions, competitions and community events, with over 1,000 books being given to these six schools.  

(HCMC) In its third year in Vietnam, ‘Kids Read’, the award-winning reading programme aimed at school children has come to HCMC. The ceremony launching it will be held today in HCMC including a story-telling demonstration by British Council teachers and 180 primary students. 

Kids Read has had two successful years in Vietnam. The project reached nearly 4,000 primary children in Binh Duong, and with over 3,500 students in Hanoi who directly participated in its activities. A further 10,000 children have indirectly benefited from access to Kids Read Library and received lessons from the 50 trained teachers. Each year, in addition to book delivery to schools, teacher trainings, and competitions for both children and teachers, there were four community events which were organised, involving thousands of parents and students. 

Through the two years of implementation in Binh Duong and Hanoi, the project has brought encouraging results for students, schools and parents: students built regular reading habits; teachers participating in the project were trained and professionally supported by the British Council in integrating story-telling activities in their lessons; and parents had access to book lists and reading methods to help nurture the love of books for their children. 

The Kids Read project fits with the library development plan for primary schools as well as supports in achieving the goal of improving the English language proficiency of students of the National Foreign Languages 2020 Project for participating schools. The Ho Chi Minh City Department of Education and Training welcomes the British Council and HSBC to implement the project in Ho Chi Minh City this year and will support the project to achieve its goals.

In 2017, Kids Read will set up libraries in six primary schools in Ho Chi Minh City and provide approximately 200 story books to each school.  The library is a basic resource for schools to proactively organise reading sessions for children, and for teachers to embed creative reading activities in their regular teaching. Six participating schools include: Tân Thông Primary School – Củ Chi district; Lý Chính Thắng Primary School – Hóc Môn district; Nguyễn Trực Primary School – Nhà Bè district; Bình Chánh Primary School – Bình Chánh district; Lê Quý Đôn Primary School – Bình Tân district; and Cần Thạnh Primary School – Cần Giờ district. Approximately 4000 students at the six schools will have the opportunity to read more books and participate in story-telling competitions. 

Jon Glendinning, Director Ho Chi Minh City, British Council said: ‘Reading is a transferable skill that opens up a world of opportunities for children. Good reading habits established early, improve later performance in a range of life skills as well as developing language and critical thinking skills. The Kids Read project encourages Vietnamese primary children to read for pleasure both in the classroom and at home. It will also help develop the English language skills of the future generation through access to the very best of UK children’s books. This is a very exciting opportunity for both the British Council and HSBC to collaborate on such a meaningful project to give young people access to English as a vital part of a child’s education in a globalised world.’ 

What is reading for pleasure? Reading for pleasure refers to reading that we do of our own free will, deriving satisfaction simply from the act of reading. It typically involves materials that reflect our own choice, at a time and place that suits us.  

All the studies show that reading for pleasure not only impacts on reading achievement but also increases general knowledge (both from fiction and non-fiction), a better understanding of other cultures, community participation and a greater insight into human nature and decision-making as books offer windows to other lives, and ways of behaving.

Notes to Editor

For more information, please contact

Vu Hai Dang
Communications Manager
British Council Vietnam
20 Thuy Khue, Tay Ho, Hanoi
T +84 (0)4 38436780 (ext.1957)
F +84 (0)4 38434962

About the British Council

The British Council is the UK’s international organisation for cultural relations and educational opportunities. We create international opportunities for the people of the UK and other countries and build trust between them worldwide. 

We work in more than 100 countries and our 8,000 staff – including 2,000 teachers – work with thousands of professionals and policy makers and millions of young people every year by teaching English, sharing the arts and delivering education and society programmes.

We are a UK charity governed by Royal Charter. A core publicly-funded grant provides 20 per cent of our turnover which last year was £864 million. The rest of our revenues are earned from services which customers around the world pay for, such as English classes and taking UK examinations, and also through education and development contracts and from partnerships with public and private organisations. All our work is in pursuit of our charitable purpose and supports prosperity and security for the UK and globally.  

For more information, please visit: You can also keep in touch with the British Council through and

About HSBC Vietnam

HSBC has been in Vietnam for 140 years – the bank first opened an office in Saigon (now Ho Chi Minh City) in 1870. HSBC was the first foreign bank to launch its locally incorporated entity on 1 January 2009 as HSBC Bank (Vietnam) Ltd. The bank’s current network includes two branches and five transaction offices in Ho Chi Minh City, one branch, three transaction offices and one deposit office in Hanoi, and four full-service branches in Binh Duong, Can Tho, and Da Nang. HSBC is one of the largest foreign banks in the country in terms of investment capital, network, product range, staff and customer base.