Today, 23 April, marks World Book Night, a national celebration of reading and books which focuses on reaching those who don’t regularly read.
Reading for pleasure is a globally recognised indicator in a huge range of social issues from poverty to mental health. Yet 36% of people in the UK don’t regularly read, while 16% of adults in England and Northern Ireland (that’s around 5.8 million people) score at the lowest level of proficiency in literacy or below.
The Reading Agency, which runs World Book Night, gives out books across the UK, gifting through organisations such as prisons, libraries, colleges, care homes and homeless shelters, as well as individuals who give out their own books within their communities. Penguin Random House UK is supporting the Reading Agency’s efforts by giving away 8,000 books to over 100 charities and organisations across the country for World Book Night this year.