Buchstart Schweiz, Sikjm, Switzerland

Programme name Country Date of information
Buchstart Schweiz Switzerland June 2019

see videos

Question Answer
About the Organisation  
Organisation name Swiss Insitute for Children’s and Youth Media
Organisation address Georgengasse 6, 8006 Zürich
Goal/objective Research, documentation in the field of children’s and youth media and reading promotion
Contact Person Barbara Jakob
Position of Contact Person Project manager
Contact email info@sikjm.ch
Contact Telephone Number  
Organisation website www.sikjm.ch, www.buchstart.ch
Organisation type National reading promotion organization
How many staff does your organisation employ? 26
About the Programme  
Basic details  
Programme name Buchstart – Né pour Lire – Nati per Leggere
Country/Province/City where the programme takes place Switzerland
Year started 2008 (in cooperation with Bibliomedia Switzerland)
Programme goal/objective The aim is to support all children born in Switzerland in their language development and to give them access to the world of knowledge. Buchstart Switzerland sensitises parents to how they can playfully promote their child’s perceptive faculties and positively influence its language development. In order to achieve this goal in Switzerland, all families with a newborn shold receive a bookstart package.
Funding sources Federal Office of Culture, cantons, div. sponsors
Geographic coverage nationwide
Purpose of the programme  
Not for profit? yes, not for profit
Religious or political purpose? none
Local consistency of model  
Is your programme model consistent across your geographic area, or are there regional differences? a) Consistent, regarding the aim and the strong focus on libraries as well as the content of the packages.
b) Not consistent, regarding the distribution of the packages:
German speaking part: mainly in the libraries, after parents have received a voucher via paediatrician/mother counsellor, in some places paediatrician/mother counsellor distribute the package directly.
Italian speaking part: sent by the community together with a letter including information concerning the local library.
French speaking part: in the libraries or via healthcare workers
Book Packs  
What are the contents of your gifting pack? 2 board books (exchanged every 2 years, one rather intended for babies the other for toddlers) and a multilingual informational brochure for parents (16 languages) Packed in a cardboard box
Is your programme offered free of charge to all families? yes
Partnerships and Delivery  
What are your primary ‘points of contact’ with the population you serve? Library, Paediatricians, Mother counsellors, communities, intercultural mediators
Who gifts/hands-out your pack to families/?   healthcare workers, librarians, paediatricians, Mother counsellors, early education specialists.
Important is the local/regional construction and care of a strong network to reach as many families as possible.
Please list your other programme partnerships. Bibliomedia Switzerland is joint co-partner, especially responsible for the distribution of the packages and therefore for the main part of the budget; Bibliomedia is a nationwide service provider for public and school libraries. The first 10 years have shown that the local library normally is the core of the project.
If your programme uses volunteers, please give some more details None
Is the programme universal or targeted? Basically it is universal but we try to reach more disadvantaged families as well as families with migrational background. Therefore we motivate local networks to include as many partners (common or private) as possible. For example with the aim to include Bookstart information in specialized programmes for these target groups.
How many children does your programme serve a year? About 30,000 receive the package (=35% newborn/year)
At what age/gifting period do children receive your programme. Birth – 6 months, 6 – 12 months, 12 – 24 months,
Diversity provision  
Does your program include provisions or resources for children with special needs?   No
What language populations does your programme serve? The books are available in 3 languages (German, French, Italian), the brochure for parents is multilingual (16 languages: German, French, Italian, English, Turkish, Tigrinya, Tamil, Arab, Farsi, Spanish, Serbian, Russian, Portuguese, Kurdish, Croatian, Albanian)
Evaluation and research  
Have you conducted programme evaluation or research (including longitudinal)? If yes, has this evaluation/research been published?  In the first years after the launch in 2008 there have been 2 master theses mainly concerning the impact of the project on libraries (as there was absolutely nothing for families with very young children before!) Both also included feedback from parents and how they esteem the offer, especially the regular Bookstart sessions in the library.


19 Nov 2020 meeting –  Book Selection

Barbara Jakob: Schweizerisches Institut für Kinder-und Jugendmedien, SIKJM, Switzerland