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News story

HarperCollins donate 10,000 books to Stoke Reads

11 Feb 2021

Donating a book

HarperCollins are donating 10,000 books to Stoke-on-Trent families most affected by COVID-19.

Publisher HarperCollins have very generously donated a huge selection of titles to Stoke Reads, including children’s books and learning resources, adult fiction and crossword puzzles.

The books will be distributed to families and adults across Stoke-on-Trent in partnership with local schools and community partners including library services, youth groups and foodbanks. For many of these children, these may be the first books they have ever owned. Following a prolonged period of disruption to education as a result of COVID-19 and public libraries being closed, getting books into the hands of the children who need them most at this time is more vital than ever to help prevent them from falling even further behind their peers. For parents, receiving these books can inspire them to share a love of reading as a family, while adults without children can take comfort from the worlds within books at this unpredictable time.

The titles included in the donation have been selected for a mix of age ranges, with something for all the family. Copies of Michael Morpurgo’s Toto and An Eagle in the Snow are included in amongst books from the Mr Men & Little Miss series, David Walliams’ The Beast of Buckingham Palace, and home-schooling resources like Awesome Maths and English for ages 5-7 by National Geographic Kids. For adults, longer non-fiction reads like The Fear Bubble by Ant Middleton and romantic fiction titles like Just My Luck by Adele Parks have been included.

The donation, which will be delivered to families over the February half term and during Easter, is part of HarperCollins’ ongoing commitment to encouraging and enabling a love of reading via The Literacy Project, which was launched by CEO Charlie Redmayne in 2018.

Reading enjoyment is at a recent high and it is supporting children’s mental wellbeing during lockdown. 3 in 5 (59.3%) children and young peopletold us during lockdown that reading makes them feel better, while 3 in 10 (31.6%) said that reading helps them when they feel sad because they cannot see their family and friends.

This generous donation from HarperCollins will make a huge difference to the families we work with in Blackpool, Manchester and Stoke-on-Trent. Our research shows that children who have books of their own at home have higher levels of mental wellbeing and are more likely to enjoy reading. We hope the HarperCollins books will inspire, provide comfort and entertain during this third lockdown.

Jonathan Douglas CBE, Chief Executive of the National Literacy Trust

The HarperCollins Literacy Project, hand in hand with the National Literacy Trust and other organisations, are offering free books where they are most needed. Reading expands our horizons, gives comfort and hope and helps us make sense of this dark and difficult world and our place on this fragile planet.’

Michael Morpurgo
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