Imagine you are 8 years old. Mum seems very very nervous and although you thought you were walking to school you are now going in a different direction. You arrive at a strange house and are told this is where you are going to live for a while. You don’t have any of your toys, clothes or books with you. You are scared and upset. You walk into a room and in front of you is a bookcase full of books and you can see one of your favourite authors. You are told that you can look at the books while mum talks to the lady. You pick one off the shelf and sit down. Minutes later you have taken refuge in a book…..
This is what we do. We are a charitable organisation that was set up in North Wales in 2010 to provide a bookcase full of children’s books to women’s refuges all over the UK. So far 56 refuges have a bookcase and 20 have Family Change sets (March 2016)
As well as providing books for the children and their mums whilst they are in the refuge when they leave they can take a favourite book from the bookcase with them. This will give them something that belongs just to them.
We promote the importance of children being encouraged to read by and with their mums. Children who enjoy books read more and this means that they will do better in school, they will have more confidence and ultimately they can expand the possibilities for their future.
We also supply a set of Family Change books to each refuge to enable the playworkers to work one-to-one with the children to help them deal with their emotions and the difficult situation they are in.
There are over 400 refuges in the UK so if you would like to get involved with collecting books and/or raising money in your area we can help! Just get in touch.
Vision & Mission
Book at Bedtime aims to enable and encourage every child in a refuge situation to have access to a bookcase full of children’s books to read either alone or with their mums. We aim to achieve this via fundraising and charitable grants.
In 2010 the founder of Book at Bedtime was taking part in a self-development course that required her to set up a community project that would benefit the wider community and was on a topic that she was passionate about. Being passionate about books and reading and remembering a talk that she had attended some 15 years ago about women’s refuges a light bulb moment occurred! What about collecting books that children had outgrown and donating them to women’s refuges? And this idea meant recycling books which was great too. This expanded to a bookcase full of books….. then a bookmark for each child….. then a set of Family Change books for the playworkers to use. But the idea that each child could take a favourite book away with them – that was there at the beginning. The awful thought of a child without a book to hold and read was and is the motivation for the continued growth of Book at Bedtime.
Book at Bedtime has 6 trustees who have been on board since the start of the charity in 2010. These are Helen Conway, Kathryn Crabtree, Laura Graydon, Lucy Jones, Lesley Mosley and Peta Pendlebury who is also the founder.
Book at Bedtime is currently run by volunteers – would you like to be one?