The National Literacy Trust is partnering with McDonald’s to provide "reading tips" to its child diners.
The fast-food chain already offers a "Happy Reader'" voucher in every Happy Meal box sold, which allows parents to acquire a children’s book worth around £4.99, for just £1 from high street retailer W H Smith.
Now the National Literacy Trust has teamed up to advise on suitable recommendations for Happy Meal book promotions and to review and advise on the design and content of all text-based elements of the McDonald’s Happy Meal, including the Happy Meal box and activity sheets. The charity will also share industry research and insight to help develop the Happy Readers programme "in a way that will add most value for children, parents and families".
Since it launched in 2007, the W H Smith £1 book offer has seen more than 2.5m children’s books redeemed, with nearly 500,000 in 2013 so far.
Lisa Rootes, head of partnerships at the National Literacy Trust, said: “We are delighted to be working with McDonald’s to give families access to quality, affordable books and spread the joy of reading. Reading for enjoyment can enrich children and young people’s lives beyond the classroom and give them vital skills for the rest of their lives.”
McDonald’s first two Happy Meal book promotions were Michael Morpurgo’s Muddlepuddle Farm series in 2012 and the DK Amazing World factual series in 2013.
By the end of 2014, McDonald’s UK has pledged to have handed out at least 15m fiction and non-fiction books to families across the UK.