The theme for this year is “Literacy in Digital World”. Just as knowledge, skills and competencies evolve in the digital world, so does what it means to be literate. In order to close the literacy skills gap and reduce inequalities, this year’s International Literacy Day will highlight the challenges and opportunities in promoting literacy in the digital world, a world where, despite progress, at least 758 million adults and 263 million out-of-school children still lack basic literacy skills.


UNESCO, 2016

International Literacy Day is celebrated annually worldwide and brings together governments, multi- and bilateral organizations, NGOs, private sectors, communities, teachers, learners and experts in the field. It is an occasion to mark achievements and reflect on ways to counter remaining challenges for the promotion of literacy as an integral part of lifelong learning.

This year also marks our 20th Anniversary of being formally known as Real Action! We have cause for celebration. We have – with demonstrable success – given our Butterfly teaching to thousands of children from the disadvantaged west London community that we were set up to serve. We have three Butterfly Saturday schools, demand for more, and we also teach literacy-needy pupils in their schools. We sever the connection between family and educational disadvantage. Yes, we have much to celebrate!

Please join us for this milestone celebration on International Literacy Day!

Our Speakers will include:

Lady Owen – Real Action’s New Patron

Miriam Gross (Lady Owen) is a literary editor and writer. She is also Real Action’s newest Patron and has served on the Board of Trustees for 2 years (2014-2016).

She started her career at the Observer newspaper as a secretary in 1965, becoming deputy literary editor in 1970 and Woman’s editor in 1981. In 1986 she joined the Daily Telegraph as Arts editor and from 1991 to 2005 she worked as literary editor and associate editor of the Sunday Telegraph. More recently, she has been a contributor to The Spectator, as the magazine’s diarist, and has written an occasional column for the Financial Times.

Brooke Masters – Companies Editor, Financial Times

Brooke Masters has been the FT’s Companies Editor since 2013. She previously served as Chief Regulation Correspondent and City correspondent and wrote for the Lex column. She spent the first part of her career covering a variety of beats including education, criminal justice and local politics for the Washington Post.

Katie Ivens – Education Director, Real Action

A former journalist and editor, Katie became a parent governor, and helped pupils who were poor readers. She became vice-chair of the Campaign for Real Education and a Westminster Councillor. She helped set up the Butterfly Summer Reading School on the Mozart Estate in 1995, then helped form the Mozart community-led educational charity, Real Action in 1997.

Come and hear about our achievements over the past 20 years. Get a preview of our Impact Report 2017. Hear our plans for the future. Meet our trustees and supporters. Enjoy refreshments. Win (maybe) some amazing raffle/auction prizes.

  • When: 8th September 2017, from 5:30pm (for 6pm start) to 8pm
  • Where: London Capital Club, 15 Abchurch Lane, London EC4N 7BW
  • Price: £45 per person

Our educational charity, Real Action, is best known for the outstanding achievement of the children we teach at our Butterfly literacy classes – on Saturdays, and in schools. We are based in Queen’s Park next to the Mozart Estate with the UK’s highest level of child deprivation. Our pupils’ reading ages rise by an average 12 months in 20 hours’ pacey Butterfly literacy teaching. Disadvantaged children need not be doomed to educational disadvantage.

Booking for this event has now closed.