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Books offer a moment for peace. The joyful time of sharing a book and talking with a loved one is empowering and builds the foundation for our social competence, self-esteem and mental well-being. This is true for any child, but for Ukrainian children who have just experienced trauma, it is especially important. This is why in the #BooksGiveRefuge program we have been distributing books to refugee children from the beginning of the Russian-Ukrainian War. We have distributed over 200 000 books.

RECOMMENDATION

Let’s give books to Ukrainian mothers in Poland!

I was invited to visit Poland in 2019 by Fundacja Powszechnego Czytania (Universal Reading Foundation), which engaged me in a series of lectures and workshops for literacy activists, teachers and pediatricians. I was very impressed by the foundation's remarkable dedication to promoting children’s success in school and later in life through reading. This is even more important for the hundreds of thousands of displaced Ukrainian children who are in Poland today: children witnessing disaster or war need their parents’ special attention, regular daily routines and soothing alternatives to the reality around them. One of the best cures is for parents to read to their children, if only for 10–15 minutes a few times a day. Let’s give books to Ukrainian mothers in Poland!

 

Barry Zuckerman MD
Professor and Chair Emeritus
Department of Pediatrics
Boston University School of Medicine
Boston Medical Center
Reach Out and Read co-founder

BOOKS SUPPORT MENTAL HEALTH

We support children's mental resistance

Through books we strengthen mental resistance of young children. The studies have proven that:
- reading a book reduces stress level by 60% after only first 6 minutes of reading (Lewis D., Sussex University, 2009)
- for children who read it is easier to build realtionships with others
- reading together regularly helps to work through traumas.

Every donation is a cotribution to the packages of books we give to refugee children, orphanes and foster children of social welfare centres.

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ARTIST'S AMAZING HELP

Our fundraising efforts’ started very early after the outburst of the War. We are grateful to the talented ilustrator Sophie Blackall who, after having read about our efforts in the Washington Post, drew this beautiful fundrising image and posted in on her social media.

We received almost 50 drawings and literary texts from Polish artists who wanted to support the cause. Together with Sophie Blackall’s illustration this became „The World is Beautiful. A Book Against War” – a book we published in Polish and Ukrainian sales from which we used to continue helping.

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ABOUT THE PROJECT

Almost immediately after the war in Ukraine broke out we sprang into action to provide support for refugee children and Ukrainian publishers. That happened to be the beginning of our campaign, later called Books Give Refuge.

Our foundation began receiving email files of children’s books from Ukrainian publishers. Polish printers donated their services to print and distribute the books; publishers offered warehouse space and transportation. The next step was distributing books through Polish orphanages, day care centers, kindergartens, schools, libraries, and train stations where Ukrainian families are arriving, and, in some cases, sheltering for the short term.

We received numerous donations from all over the world, which lead us to supporting Ukrainian publishers with $155,000, to help them stay afloat throughout this crisis. During the war many of the country’s publishers, warehouses, printing houses, and bookstores have been destroyed by missiles, and most Ukrainian publishing professionals have been forced to flee.

DMYTRO DROZDOVSKY

Dmytro Drozdovsky, writer and publisher from Ukraine

Thanks to our donors we had been able to send 150 000 dollars of financial support to Ukrainian publishers to help them survive the worst moments. Dmytro Drozdovsky is one of the recepients.

MEDIA

Media about the Books Give Refuge campaign:

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