Checking in with Worldreader

Checking in with Worldreader

Four ways the 2017 LBF Charity of the Year is embracing publishing innovation to end illiteracy

Earlier this year, we were delighted to have been chosen as the London Book Fair’s 2017 Charity of the Year. With their generous support, we were able to connect with dozens of international publishers and introduce Worldreader to a new UK audience. Since then, we’ve been very busy! Here’s a look at some of the ways we’ve been championing digital reading in underserved communities across the world in the last seven months.


1. We’ve launched a new adventure collection in partnership with the Wilbur and Niso Smith Foundation


Ruth Sorby, Worldreader’s UK Development Manager on stage at the 2017 Adventure Writing Awards. Photographer Fernanda Liberti










On September 7th, we launched a new adventure collection which will be available to readers across Africa through our mobile phone app. Adventure stories are among the most popular in our digital library, so these new additions will keep our readers coming back for more. Among the new titles in this collection we’ll have three adventure novels written by African writers, as well as eight thrilling short stories.

A big thanks to our partners, Wilbur & Niso Smith Foundation, who are dedicated to empowering writers, promoting literacy and advancing adventure writing around the world.


2. We’re co-creating 5 books to empower women and girls In Kenya

Last year we launched Anasoma, a pilot project aimed at increasing women and girls’ access to an online library that will ultimately boost their empowerment and assertiveness. As part of the project, we conducted a writing competition across Kenya with the goal of having five new pieces of content that will empower women and girls.


We recently chose the winning titles and the editorial process is underway with our partnered publisher, WordAlive. Stay tuned for the book launch in December!


3. We’re curating a psychosocial collection for Syrian refugees









We’re expanding our successful Read to Kids program to Jordan to try to mitigate the impacts of the Syrian refugee crisis on refugee and host community families. Through mobile technology, partnerships with Arabic publishers and a network of organizations on the ground, the program will bring 250 high quality Arabic children’s books to 50,000 households across Jordan. As part of the program, we’ve been been working with educators and publishers to curate a psychosocial collection of books that encourages stories and reading as a safe way to explore emotions and generate healing.


4. We’re expanding our programs to reach young adults in Mexico

We’ve partnered with IBBY Mexico to promote digital reading among young adults in Mexico. We’ll be working closely with reading campaigners who will reach 10,000 people with our digital library. As part of the project we’ll be acquiring 100 new digital books in Spanish to engage the readers. Through this we hope to inspire a culture of reading among young adults in Mexico. This is just a first step towards Worldreader’s expansion into Latin America.

We believe it’s going to take a collective effort to create a world where everyone can be a reader and we’re grateful to our friends at the London Book Fair for their partnership and support. To find out more about the work we’re doing and how you can get involved, please visit our website at

This blog post was written by our 2017 Charity of the Year Worldreader

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