SOURCE: Scotiabank


May 17, 2016 09:00 ET

Congratulations to the Winner of First Book Canada's Scotiabank Reading Hero Challenge 2016 -- St. John Vianney Catholic School

TORONTO, ON--(Marketwired - May 17, 2016) - First Book Canada and Scotiabank, in collaboration with the Toronto Marlies, celebrated St. John Vianney Catholic School's grade 1 class winning the Scotiabank Reading Hero Challenge. The winning class received tickets to see the Toronto Marlies take on the Hartford Wolf Pack at the Ricoh Centre.

"I believe my class and I have integrated the program very well into our weekly routine as it has been incorporated into other subject areas as well. The benefits of the challenge are that the students are fully engaged and eager to do the activities. It has allowed them to extend their understanding by making connections, by further developing their vocabulary and reading and writing more. We brainstorm together and discuss what activities they would like to do," said Ivana Quaglietta, St. John Vianney Grade 1 Teacher.

The First Book Canada Scotiabank Reading Hero Challenge commenced on February 1, 2016. The grade one students of eight elementary schools in high-needs areas of the GTA began their eight week long journey towards completing the Reading Hero Challenge. The requirements for this challenge were to read eight books and complete a Chart paper book report at the end of each week for eight weeks.

The challenge was carefully tracked as it included a very strong social media presence on Twitter and was sourced through the hashtag #ReadingHeroChallenge. Stories, quotes and pictures of the reports as well as students engaged in reading activities were tagged with the hashtag which made for a really interactive and engaging competition. The final reports were submitted at the end of March and after review of all reports, St. John Vianney Catholic School took top honours.

"We are so excited about the results for The First Book Canada Reading Hero Challenge with Scotiabank and the Toronto Marlies," said Tom Best, Executive Director at First Book Canada. "This program has been a huge motivator to get kids reading in eight grade one classes across the GTA, serving children from low income families. We are very proud to have this unique association with Scotiabank and Zach Hyman and the Toronto Marlies organization. First Book Canada is delighted with the outcomes of the program in its first year, knowing hundreds of students just starting to learn to read have eight wonderful, brand new books of their very own to treasure for years to come."

"Congratulations to the grade one students at St. John Vianney Catholic School and all of the schools that participated in First Book Canada's Scotiabank Reading Hero Challenge," said Heather McFarlane, Branch Manager, Lakeshore and 6th Street, Scotiabank. "Scotiabank is proud to give schools across the GTA access to reading materials and we are thrilled at the response from the students and their passion for learning."

Toronto Marlies player, and bestselling children's author Zach Hyman said, "It is an honour to have my book chosen and to represent the Marlies. I would like to thank Scotiabank and First Book Canada for organizing and arranging this wonderful event and for giving children this great opportunity."

About First Book Canada 
First Book Canada provides new books to children in need, addressing one of the most important factors affecting literacy -- access to books. By making brand-new, high-quality books available on an ongoing basis, First Book Canada is transforming the lives of children and elevating the quality of education in the country. In 2015, First Book Canada distributed over 1 million new books to children in need across Canada. All funds raised in Canada go to programs serving Canadian children from low-income families. For more information, or to sign up to get books, visit us at and follow our latest news on Twitter @FirstBookCanada and on our Facebook page.

About Scotiabank
Through our global community investment strategy, Scotiabank and its employees support causes at a grassroots level. Recognized as a leader for our charitable donations and philanthropic activities, in 2015, Scotiabank contributed $67 million to help our communities around the world.

Scotiabank is Canada's international bank and a leading financial services provider in North America, Latin America, the Caribbean and Central America, and Asia-Pacific. We are dedicated to helping our 23 million customers become better off through a broad range of advice, products and services, including personal and commercial banking, wealth management and private banking, corporate and investment banking, and capital markets. With a team of more than 89,000 employees and assets of $920 billion (as at January 31, 2016), Scotiabank trades on the Toronto (TSX: BNS) and New York Exchanges (NYSE: BNS). Scotiabank distributes the Bank's media releases using Marketwired. For more information, please visit and follow us on Twitter @ScotiabankViews.

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Contact Information

  • For more information and media inquiries, please contact:

    Tom Best

    Executive Director
    First Book Canada
    P. 866-393-1222 ext. 0130
    C. 416-949-0056

    Erin Truax
    Public, Corporate and Government Affairs
    (416) 933-2592