In 2010, Optus approached The Smith Family with the innovative idea of trialling the student2student program in selected rural and regional households with no home phone line.
Since then Optus have supported the program by supplying a mobile phone to the reader and their buddy, as well as the call credits they need to complete the program. Two or three times a week the reader will call their volunteer buddy and practise their reading.
Thanks to Optus’ generous funding, and donating mobile phones, connectivity and credit, more than 7,400 students have been able to participate in the mobile version of the program since 2011. The student2student program delivers amazing results for the readers and has grown significantly in the last five years due to Optus’ involvement. In 2017, 96 percent of students’ reading age improved based on pre and post program testing. Additionally, 88 percent of students said they felt more confident with their schoolwork, and 90 percent said they now enjoy reading more
In a student’s own words, “I enjoyed reading to my buddy as it helped build my confidence.”
This year Optus and The Smith Family aim to reach 700 disadvantaged student readers across Australia through the mobile student2student program.
This program is proudly supported by Optus