A massive thank you to the people of Plymouth that got involved in a citywide book collection, which resulted in 660 brand new books being delivered to our children’s wards.
Karlie Somerville, owner of EcoBlitz South-West, has previously collected books for level 12 and last year, managed to reach a total of 192 books, with just a few mums from Plympton St Maurice Primary School. This year, she aimed to double the quantity and appealed to the kind-hearted people of Plymouth on the Facebook page, Plymouth Gossip Girls.
After receiving a fantastic response, many women came forward to offer their support and donate hundreds of both used books, which would be distributed into local dental practices, doctors surgeries, churches and for the women's refuge and unused books, which would be wrapped as Christmas presents to be handed out during the festive period on our children’s wards.
Karlie said: “I couldn’t believe the amazing response that we received from women across Plymouth. We organised several drop off points around the city, including Mace's Flooring and Brook Stores in Plympton, Crownhill Fort, Eva's World, Deer Park Stores and Truly Scrumptious as our Saltash drop off.
“Previously, we have used my front room to wrap all of the books so they can be handed out throughout the festive period, but this year we soon realised that a bigger space was needed. I approached Derriford Centre for Health & Wellbeing and they kindly offered me their lounge bar to use free of charge, so a group could meet and wrap all of the books.”
After receiving such a high volume of books, Karlie’s mum, Nyrene Dudley, asked B&Q if they were able to donate or lend some boxes to transport them and they kindly offered to donate two heavy duty storage boxes, enabling the books to be easily wheeled into the hospital.
Karlie continued: “The support and response really was fantastic and I hope that next year more people will get on board and we can achieve a lot more, including new books and toys. I'm extremely thankful to everyone who helped, whether it was donating books, tape and sellotape, taking time to pick up donations, offering their work place as a drop off point and then helping to organise, label and wrap all the books.”
Sue Rodgers, Play Specialist Team Leader, said: “It is fantastic that so many people have thought about the children that will be in hospital over the Christmas period. These gifts will make such a difference to their experience around attending appointments as well as being inpatients. We want to thank everyone involved in the collection and wrapping of more than 600 books and particularly Karlie for organising this amazing event.”