Give the gift of reading to Norfolk's children in care this Christmas

24 November 2022

Giving a child in care the gift of a book at Christmas is the focus of Norfolk’s 16th Giving Tree Appeal.

The appeal, which is an initiative by Norfolk County Council’s Children’s Services and Waterstones, resulted in more than 1,000 books being gifted to children and young people last Christmas.

The Giving Tree is hosted in the Norwich Castle Street branch of Waterstone’s book shop every year. It is decorated with hundreds of tags which each represent a child and the book they would like to receive for Christmas.

There are requests for books from hundreds of Norfolk children and young people currently living in foster care or children’s residential homes. Some will have asked for a particular book or story they love by a particular author whilst others may have requested a certain genre or type of book they enjoy.

Councillor John Fisher, Cabinet Member for Children’s Services, said: “Giving a child a book for Christmas is a magical gift which encourages the joy of reading and inspires youngsters’ imaginations.

“This appeal gives Norfolk’s children in care so much pleasure when they open the special book they have been waiting for on Christmas morning and can immerse themselves in an adventure or learn something new.

“I’d like to send a heartfelt festive thanks to everyone who has bought Giving Tree books over the years and to the generosity of those participating this year.”

The Giving Tree Appeal is open until Saturday 10 December. To participate:

  • Visit the store in Castle Street in person, select a tag from the Giving Tree and buy the book at the till.
  • Email norwich@waterstones.com with Giving Tree Appeal in the subject line, request a full list of the books which have been wished for by children, choose one, and follow the instructions on how to purchase the book online.

The books are collected and delivered by Children’s Services staff so they reach children in time for Christmas. The team is already preparing deliveries so is encouraging people who wish to participate in the appeal to buy a book as soon as possible.

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