The high street toy retailer, The Entertainer is encouraging kids and families to read together this World Book Day with the launch of its Big Book Rehoming initiative, its charity drive that will aim to support the one in 11 children from disadvantaged homes in the UK who don’t own a book.
The appeal has been launched in partnership with the retailer’s long-time charity partner, The Salvation Army and will run across all of The Entertainer’s 172 stores from today (Thursday, March 5th), aligning with World Book Day.
The Entertainer is calling on families to donate their unwanted children’s books, so they can be rehomed with underprivileged families. The National Literacy Trust found children from underprivileged homes who don’t own a book are six times less likely to read at their expected level.
The Big Book Rehoming aims to encourage all families to read more, after research commissioned by The Entertainer found that of the 807 families surveyed across Britain, one in five (20 per cent) spend less than an hour a week reading with their children and one in 12 (eight per cent) devote less than half an hour to the cause.
In contrast, a third of families (30 per cent), spend over two hours a week watching YouTube videos together with one in seven households quizzed spending more than four hours watching YouTube together each week.
When asked to rank the importance of doing activities together as a family, making social media content together such as creating social posts, Tik Tok and YouTube videos also ranked higher than reading.
On a scale of one to 10 with 10 being the most, 14 per cent of families said making YouTube content was the most important thing to do together and eight per cent of families said reading was the least important.
When it came to getting out and about as a family, out of school clubs and trips to the cinema were regular activities on the family calendar with nearly a third of families going to the cinema every month and out of school classes being visited every two to three days for a quarter of families. In contrast, a quarter of families (22 per cent) never visited a library.
Gary Grant, founder and executive chairman of The Entertainer, said: “We are extremely pleased to launch The Big Book Rehoming in partnership with The Salvation Army. Reading is such an important part of childhood learning and development.
“Knowledge and education are fundamental building blocks for life and missing out on having books to read can take away the freedom and imagination reading can inspire. We’re proud to be helping to rehome books with children who need them whilst continuing to support the work of The Salvation Army.”
Kirk Bradley, head of corporate partnerships of The Salvation Army Trading Company, added: “After the success of The Big Toy Rehoming campaign we are delighted to partner with The Entertainer for The Big Book Rehoming.
“Donations from members of the public help The Salvation Army in continuing to provide practical and emotional support to vulnerable people in the UK. This is another vital campaign which benefits those who need it most and we are overjoyed to be taking part.”
The donated books will help to support The Salvation Army and its services, providing assistance to vulnerable people which can include their parent and toddler groups and disadvantaged families.
The Big Book Rehoming will run from March 5th to March 14th in all 172 of The Entertainer’s stores nationwide.
For more information about The Entertainer, please visit www.thetoyshop.com.