Tuesday, 1 December 2015

Spreading the Christmas Book Cheer - Charitable Book Gifting

Christmas is the season for good cheer and spreading that cheer far and wide. Here at Space on the Bookshelf we've been thinking of how book loving folk can spread their love of books and do a good deed this festive season, so here are a few suggestions…

It seems hardly possible that some children within our own society will wake up on the 25th of December to no stocking or gifts, but sadly this is a sad reality for many children living within the UK. So with this thought is lovely to know that The Blackwell’s Oxford Giving Tree is back again this year. The Giving Tree is an opportunity to gift a book to one of these children from less-than-ideal circumstances, and what makes it truly unique and special is that you can choose a book for a particular child. The Gift Tree is a Christmas tree in store that is adorned with parcel tags which has written on it the age, gender, and preferences of a child. You pick a tag, choose a book , buy it and Blackwell staff wrap the gift and work with a charity to distribute the gifts on Christmas Eve.

Last year, friend of SOTB Robin Stevens launched the Giving Tree, to read more about it press here. Also good news for anyone who isn’t local to Oxford, as Blackwells now to an online Giving Tree, press here to find out more.

This year has seen a lot of coverage over the plight of the Syrian Refugees and the migrant camp at Calais. There have been some truly remarkable fundraising efforts, like Patrick Ness’s campaign that raised a phenomenal sum or the Migrant’s library. Back in the summer I donated a pile of OUP Picture dictionaries to the Library, but due to the massive amounts of supports they have been inundated with books, however there is another way to support them, by a monetary donation to the library (press here to find out more) or by way of the Waterstones Buy-a-Book-for-Syria initiative.
Waterstones, have partnered up with Oxfam and publishers to see a series of books within their shops where all the profits go to the Syria appeal. To find out more, pop into your local Waterstones. Or press here.

If you want to spread your book cheer closer to home, then the booktrust supports UK based children, by providing children and organisations with books and works tirelessly to promote literacy and the love of reading. Booktrust always welcome donations, to find out more press here.

Image courtesy of The Book Bus

When you are looking for gift inspiration for the person who has got everything, how about sending them the gift of giving with The Book Bus, Gift a Book Card. Book Bus, travel Africa bringing books to communities, and you can buy a beautiful Quentin Blake illustrated Christmas Card for £10, where the money goes to buy books for The Book Bus appeal. To find out more about The Book Bus Cards press here.

Image courtesy of The Book Bus

Of course spreading the Christmas Book Cheer could start even closer to home, how about instead of /or as well as sending your children’s teachers a box of chocolates at Christmas, why not donate a book to the school Library?

Or finally if a random act of book giving is more your style, you could have a go at Bookcrossing. How about registering with the Bookcrossing website, then warp up some books and leave them in public places for people to find. To find out more read out interview with Bookcrosser Jan Markey here, or press here to go to the bookcrossing website. 


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