Many families will be struggling this Christmas, with demand for food banks in Scotland more than doubling during lockdown and set to rise.
The Scottish Book Trust has launched an appeal which aims to bring some comfort and togetherness over the festive season by giving books to families who are depending food banks and community hubs.
Results of a survey conducted by The Scottish Book Trust revealed:
- 92% agreed that reading is important to them in times of stress or anxiety.
- 64% said that reading made them feel less isolated
- 98% agreed that reading supports their wellbeing.
- 90% said reasons for reading in lockdown were to escape, relax and that it made them happy.
They also highlighted reading to escape as a child when they were in difficult situations, or to cope with mental health issues as an adult.
Marc Lambert, CEO Scottish Book Trust, commented:
“We know many families across Scotland are facing extremely difficult circumstances.
“Our new research has really underlined the difference that having access to books and stories makes, including family bonding, a sense of escapism and improving mental health and wellbeing.
” This appeal aims to spread some joy and bring calm and togetherness for families at a time of ever increasing need. Everyone deserves a little bit of magic at Christmas so please do donate £5 if you can.”
Research has also shown that families with children are being hit hardest, with a 95% increase in food parcels given to households with kids during the pandemic. Scottish Book Trust is working with food banks and community hubs across Scotland to reach as many families in need as possible.
A number of publishers are also supporting the appeal with donations of books from Simon & Schuster, Walker Books, Nosy Crow, Collins, Egmont, Harper Collins and author Cat Cubie.
For further information on how to support Scottish Book Trust’s Christmas Book Appeal, please visit www.scottishbooktrust.com/christmasappeal