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Tuesday, 17th May 2022

Meath’s new Writer-in-Residence for the Early Years Sector announced

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The Cathaoirleach of Meath County Council, Cllr. Sean Drew. pictured with Tatyana Feeney, Writer-in-Residence for the Early Years Sector and Ms. Maedhbh Rogan-McGann, Senior Executive Librarian.

Meath County Council have announced the appointment of author and illustrator Tatyana Feeney as Writer-in-Residence for the Early Years Sector.

This residency is funded under the Little Library Book Bag initiative which supports early literacy skills by gifting every child in Ireland starting school this September with a bag of books. 

The stories in the book bags are about starting school, being happy in yourself and making friends.  Every book bag also contains a library card, a library card wallet and a leaflet for parents on supporting their child’s transition from pre-school to primary school.

Tatyana has been working with the Early Years Sector since March 2022 and has already visited twenty preschools and worked with hundreds of children across the county.  She has been reading stories and leading the children in a Meath Monster Doodle.  Each ELC in the county was gifted a copy of her book ‘Eva and the perfect rain’. 

Tatyana Feeney is an author and illustrator who grew up in North Carolina but now lives in Trim.  Her books have been nominated for several awards including: The UKLA Book Award, the Waterstone's Children's Book Prize, and the Kate Greenway Medal. Little Owl's Orange Scarf was the winner of the Rotherham Children's Book Award in the Picture Book Category in 2014.

Her artwork has been exhibited in Dublin, Belfast, Vienna, Bologna, London and The Hague. Illustrations from Small Elephant's Bathtime were included in the Society of Illustrator's Original Art Exhibition 2015.

Cathaoirleach Cllr. Seán Drew praised the initiative saying it will promote early language and literacy development encouraging a lifelong love of books and reading in children. 

Chief Executive Jackie Maguire was delighted that Meath County Council Library Service received an allocation of funding to support Little Library events in 2022 which included book gifting and lots of reading and art events with Ms Feeney.

“Local authority public libraries are delighted to be involved in the First 5 My Little Library initiative and we are looking forward to welcoming all the 4 and 5-year-old children in to our libraries to collect their book bags and begin their library membership journey” she said.

“Children who are starting primary school this September are welcome to drop into their local Meath library to collect their book bag and to join their library.”  

The project is a collaboration between the Department of Children, Equality, Disability, Integration and Youth (DCEDIY), the Department of Rural and Community Development (DRCD), local authorities and the Local Government Management Agency (LGMA).

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