To honour a treasured member of staff, Takayuki Fukuda, whom we sadly lost to illness in December 2020, the MultiLit directors established the Takayuki Fukuda Perpetual Scholarship. This scholarship offers specialised MultiLit tutoring through our Literacy Centres to help a deserving child who has a reading difficulty specifically as a result of illness or injury.
The first recipient of the scholarship, Jack Turbett, suffered a brain tumour, and was in hospital for over a year, missing all of Year 1 and part of Year 2.
“Jack had the very basics but had missed the fundamental literacy learning that happens during that time. He has significant disabilities – a severe brain injury, autism, ADHD, cognitive processing and working memory problems – lots of challenges. I was told as a result of his brain injury that he was never going to be able to learn to read,” says Jack’s mother, Jessica.
While the family had received funding for tutoring, they live in a small town two-and-a-half hours from Perth, so couldn’t find appropriate support. The Ronald McDonald Learning Program Education Coordinator suggested an online program through MultiLit Literacy Centres, particularly because of our experience working with older children.
Jack’s first term of tutoring and holiday program in 2020 was supported by Ronald McDonald House Charities and Redkite funding. The Takayuki Fukuda scholarship then allowed Jack to continue to work on his literacy over the longer term.
“It has been really convenient to be able to do the program online. We do our lessons before school when he is fresh.
It doesn’t matter where we are – we could be at hospital, on holidays, and can continue his sessions. We also really like the online library books that we can access,” Jessica says.
“The tutors we have had, particularly Kerry, are really patient with Jack. He can get a bit distracted, and she has been great at directing Jack’s focus back to his learning.”
Jack’s hard work and the support of his tutors and family is paying off, as he continues his program.
“It’s been life-changing for Jack. He has gone from being able to read a few simple words to reading a book on his own with little help. He has come further in the last year with MultiLit than he has in the three or four years that he has been back at school,” Jessica says.
“It has reignited his passion for learning. He is now able to read simple sentences about things that interest him, like dinosaurs and Lego. Looking at the delight in his face when he recognises a word in one of his own books is really fantastic to see. I would love for Jack to be able to reach his potential.”