We team up with Enterprise Rent-A-Car for a book-gifting road trip

06 Dec 2021
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We’ve teamed up with Enterprise Rent-A-Car to give away almost 23,000 copies of Serena Patel’s award-winning book, ‘Anisha, Accidental Detective’ published by Usborne, to 240 primary schools in nine cities around the UK.

Today, Monday 6 December, a team from Enterprise starts a six-day tour of the UK to deliver the books in a van that has been specially decorated by the book’s illustrator Emma McCann, featuring characters from the book. The road trip will start in Belfast and then travel to schools in Glasgow, Edinburgh, Bradford, Manchester, Liverpool, Birmingham, Bristol and London.

Research shows that reading for pleasure out of school is a major contributing factor to success at school and then in later life and is even linked to a higher lifetime earning potential. Enterprise employees have recorded a read-along version of the book which children can access via an online link or QR code as an added aid to help them read.

We’ve worked with Enterprise to identify communities across the UK that will benefit from an injection of books and we’re confident that this donation will help to increase reading for pleasure among these children. The initiative aims to provide schools in very diverse inner-city communities with a stock of interesting books that they can gift children to take home and keep as this reinforces classroom learning.

The initiative was made possible with a £128,000 donation from the Enterprise Holdings Foundation as part of the US$55 million global ROAD Forward initiative that promotes social and racial equity projects across the world.

“Around one in 11 children from lower income families don’t have a book of their own at home. Reading is not just great fun, but it’s a vital skill and we want all children to love reading. Children and young people who enjoy reading and who read frequently are better readers, helping them to realise their fullest potential at school and in life. This book donation is one more important step in our literacy recovery programme to address the educational issues caused by the pandemic and will help the children who need it most. We’re so happy that Enterprise was able to support us in this programme which will see thousands of children benefitting from this exciting book.”

Darranda Rowswell, Director of Development at the National Literacy Trust

Simon Caughey-Rogers, Enterprise’s Corporate Social Responsibility and Charity Events Manager, said the partnership with the National Literacy Trust has had enormous support from the whole of the company.

“Many of our super star employees also struggled with reading at school. Every child should get the support they need to be their best and we hope this initiative will go a little way to helping more children get the resources they need. We are really looking forward to their feedback and excited to see how they get on with the book.”

Simon Caughey-Rogers, Enterprise’s Corporate Social Responsibility and Charity Events Manager

Research from the CLPE in 2020 revealed that only eight per cent of children’s books featured an ethnic minority leading character. Serena Patel’s book was chosen to inspire children who may not usually see themselves represented in the books they read.

Author Serena Patel said she supported our campaign to promote reading for pleasure and was delighted that her book was playing an important part in the programme.

“I was thrilled when I heard that Enterprise and the National Literacy Trust were coming together for this initiative to gift books to children in primary schools. The lockdowns have been tough for everyone and so being part of such a positive, inspiring project is a massive privilege. I couldn't be prouder that Anisha will be helping encourage children to discover the excitement of reading. Huge thanks to Enterprise for making it happen and for supporting young readers all over the country.”

Serena Patel

Enterprise’s ROAD (Respect, Opportunity, Achievement, Diversity) Forward programme is a global initiative launched by the Enterprise Holdings Foundation, aimed at strengthening and supporting the communities where the company operates. It provides funding to projects that open opportunities for people who lack access to resources in education, health and wellbeing.

Schools taking part in the road trip:

Belfast – 06 December

Cranmore Integrated Primary School, Finaghy Rd N, Belfast, BT10 0JB

Glasgow – 07 December

Broomhill Primary School, 57 Edgehill Road, Glasgow, G11 7HZ

Edinburgh – 07 December

Hermitage Park Primary School, Hermitage Park, Edinburgh, EH6 8HD

Bradford – 08 December

Whetley Academy Primary, Whetley Lane, Bradford, BD8 9HZ

Manchester – 08 December

Claremont Primary School, Claremont Road, Manchester, M14 7NA

Birmingham – 09 December

Heathfield Primary School, Heathfield Road, Birmingham, B19 1HJ

Bristol – 09 December

Cabot Primary School, Halston Drive, Bristol, BS2 9JE

London – 10 December

Olive School, 32 St Johns Church Road, Hackney, London, E9 6EJ