A free book for every baby in Western Australia

Reading to babies from birth builds their early language skills and gives them an early love of books that will support their future success as readers.

Better Beginnings is a universal family literacy program

Universal means the program includes every family with a new baby in Western Australia. Recent research has shown that all the groundwork for literacy development takes place in the first three years of life.

Family literacy means that although Better Beginnings starts with a book, it goes on to support families and encourages them to share stories with their children.  Better Beginnings fosters early learning through reading, talking, singing and playing.


Better Beginnings brings together research and practice, babies and books, families and libraries by:

  • introducing children to developmentally appropriate books and language activities
  • supporting parents as their child's first teacher
  • raising awareness of the value and enjoyment of reading together
  • linking families to the free services at their local public library

"I started reading to my baby at one week.  My husband thought there was no need. Now our baby is three months old and loves it.  Better Beginnings helped me to decide which books were good for my baby and showed us how to have fun reading, doing rhymes and actions and teaching our children." Parent, ECU Evaluation, 2009