Reading club with just six members collects astonishing 372 books for schoolchildren in Milton Keynes

They're now encouraging other book clubs to do the same

Monday, 16th August 2021, 6:10 pm
Updated Monday, 16th August 2021, 6:12 pm

Members of a small book club who collected 372 books for local school children are urging other groups to do the same.

The tiny Newport Pagnell club, which is cleverly called Reading Between the Wines, persuaded people to donate high quality books for youngsters aged two to seven at a school and nursery on Fishermead.

The idea was such a success that they now hope other book clubs will follow suit and help disadvantaged children at schools in their areas.

The children were delighted with their books

Jo Orbell, headteacher at The Willows School and Early Years centre said: “We were delighted to receive so many books. The children all loved to choose a book of their own to keep forever – what a treasure to help them on their incredible reading journey!”

Between the Wines members Debbie Litchfield, Julie Reynolds, Anita Raitara, Carly Williams, Debbie Litchfield, Sara Brown and Rosemary Williams initially set out to give one book to each of the 170 children at the school. However, they soon hit their target and were able to donate 200 additional books for classroom use.

Retired teacher and club member Rosemary said: “It is crucial for children to start reading and enjoying books from a very early age. Reading is the key to opening their imagination and discovering new worlds, as well as being essential to learning and amazing for improving vocabulary.”

Fellow member Carly added: “It was great to be able to help these children and we hope our efforts will now be duplicated by many more book clubs across the country. Little ideas can have a big impact.”

Members of Reading Between the Wines book club. From left to right: Debbie Litchfield, Julie Reynolds, Anita Raitara, Carly Williams, Debbie Litchfield, Sara Brown and Rosemary Williams

Evidence suggests that children who enjoy reading every day are more likely to do better at school, regardless of their social or economic background.

Book donations came from generous children, families and friends of the women. This was boosted by the support of the local Rainbows group who added to the book mountain.