Simon & Schuster Children’s Books is partnering with the National Literacy Trust (NLT) and food bank charity Feeding Britain to mark the publication of picture book The Invisible by Tom Percival.
The partnership will see the publisher donate 10,000 picture books, including copies of The Invisible, to vulnerable children aged between 0 and five, to families across the UK.
The Invisible is based on Percival’s upbringing, with the story inspired by his time spent as a child living with his family in a caravan. “Money was in very short supply, the winters were bitterly cold, the water supply came from a spring in the garden, but love, support and encouragement were always abundant," Percival has said.
The synopsis states: "One day Isabel’s parents can't pay their rent and bills and have to leave their happy home. Soon Isabel becomes ‘invisible,’ symbolising how families in poverty so often become overlooked— and are made to feel invisible. Ultimately the book sends a strong message that everyone counts and everyone belongs."
Rachel Denwood, m.d of the children's division, said: "Everyone at Simon & Schuster is extremely proud to publish Tom’s poignant and important new picture book. We felt it was essential to mark the launch of The Invisible with an act of giving and we are pleased to be partnering with the National Literacy Trust and Feeding Britain to get stories into the hands of 10,000 children who now, more than ever, need the emotional support, comfort and entertainment that books can provide."
Percival added: "When I first had a conversation with the team at Simon & Schuster about the possibility of donating some copies of The Invisible, I had no idea that it would end up being something on this scale, and including such a wide range of fantastic books. The fact that it’s being done in partnership with Feeding Britain and The National Literacy Trust, two organisations that I hugely respect, is just incredible and I can’t wait for these books to make their way to their new homes."
Jonathan Douglas, c.e.o of the NLT, said: "We are so grateful to Simon & Schuster for donating 5,000 picture and board books to our Hubs across the country—areas with profound literacy needs. We are all inspired by Tom Percival’s thought-provoking The Invisible, and its timely message that we should all be looking out for each other. We hope the thousands of families who receive a book feel both visible and supported as a result of this generous donation."
Andrew Forsey, national director of Feeding Britain, added: "It has become increasingly clear that, while children are at home, there is an important role for community centres across the Feeding Britain network to offer both nutritious meals and enriching activities. This combination has proved to be immensely popular among families. With this unbelievably generous donation from Simon & Schuster, our network will continue being able to nourish both tummies and minds."