400 books donated to help Ipswich children in lockdown
- Credit: Archant
More than 400 books have been donated to young people in Ipswich stuck at home during the Covid-19 crisis to help with their home schooling during lockdown.
The donations have been made as part of the “community shelf” scheme being run by Copleston High School and the Raedwald Trust, which runs several special schools in the town.
The initiative was set up in April when it became clear that many families were facing unprecedented hardship, with parents forced to spend more on food for their children at home - often with reduced income.
The schools’ aim is to “redress the balance” of the “disproportionate allocation of resources in our communities” by donating surplus items to those with greater need.
Already, more than 600 food parcels have been donated - but Ipswich-based literacy charity Let’s Talk Reading and Greenfields Education, an education consultancy in Manningtree, have also donated more than 400 books to the cause.
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Clair Pyper, lead volunteer at Let’s Talk Reading, said: “We immediately realised how teaming up with the community shelf would enable us to continue our work and get books out to children and young people who need them the most at this time.
“Books bring escape, boost wellbeing and improve concentration and focus.
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“We know that attainment levels are higher among children who have books to read at home, and we want to give every child the opportunity to grow and succeed through a love of reading.”
Hannah Brunning, from the Raedwald Trust, said: “We know the transformative impact of being lost in reading, and together we want to give as many children as possible the chance to experience that, especially at a time when many are feeling isolated and are missing friends and normal routines.
“We created the community shelf as a vehicle for our community to share the resources it has in support of young people and their families who are at a disadvantage, socially and economically, not just during this crisis but in the future too.
“This includes sharing resources such as books, writing and art materials, culture and experiences as well as essential food and toiletries.
“We’d like to say a huge thanks to Let’s Talk Reading and Greenfields Education for helping us to realise this ambition and making a really positive difference to the experiences of our children and their families.”
Let’s Talk Reading was set up in 2016 to promote the importance of reading and improve access to books for disadvantaged children.