Bookshop fundraiser will provide hundreds of books for Margate schools

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Francesca Wilkins outside her library | Credit: Rebecca Douglas Photography

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Submitted to Thanet

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The Thanet Library fundraising project will provide hundreds of books for local elementary schools.

Margate Bookshop hopes to raise £5,000, the equivalent of about 1,000 books. They’re aiming to get a handful of books for kids in time for Christmas, but the fundraising campaign will continue.

Since its launch at the end of October, more than £1,800 has already been donated.

Francesca Wilkins said:

“When I created The Margate Bookshop, I realized that one of my main goals would be to encourage greater participation in reading and literature, and to recreate the feeling I found over and over again browsing the bookshelves.”

The idea is that customers who buy a children’s book (most are £6.99) will be invited to round up their purchases to a tenner.

This means that with every two book purchases, another book will be donated to a child in need.

The idea came from a client, last Christmas, who donated some money to the library to be available to low-income families.

In addition, the library collects donations which will be credited using the shop’s trade discount – for every £100 donated, at least £140 worth of books will be made available.

Thanet has the lowest child literacy rate and the highest child poverty rate in all of Kent, so support for local primaries is key to the initiative.

Francesca says she was in school when she was first drawn to books and primary school teachers who instilled in her a love of reading.

She said:

“The books I read in my childhood shaped my identity and friendships for years to come.”

Margate Bookshop will work closely with Drapers Mills Elementary Academy, Northdown Elementary School and Cliftonville Elementary School, as well as other elementary schools in the area.

To learn more and support fundraising, visit here.

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