Children reading in Mathare, Kenya

Media Release: Dress up, donate and change lives in Africa on World Book Day 2017

15th February 2017 | News

PRESS RELEASE: 31 January 2017


To celebrate World Book Day on Thursday 2nd March 2017, World Book Day supported charity, Book Aid International, is asking school children to raise funds so the charity can send more books to schools and libraries in Africa by dressing up as their favourite book character and donating £1. 2017’s new range of costumes is now available online.

Book Aid International is hosting 28 costume templates that children can choose from, 10 of which are brand new for 2017. Every costume comes complete with step-by-step written instructions and nine of the costumes even come with how-to videos to follow.

To make dressing up that little bit easier, this year the costume collection includes quick to make and budget-beating costumes and props, so that busy families can take part. Children can dress up as Willy Wonka, Katniss from The Hunger Games, The BFG, Fantastic Mr Fox, Where’s Wally? and many more. The full set of costumes is available at:

As 2017 marks the 20th anniversary of World Book Day, so this year there are 20 fun school fundraising ideas. Book Aid International is asking school children who don’t want to dress up to consider another fundraising option, particularly in secondary schools. From a digital detox to convincing the Head to dress up as a literary character, there are a range of fun fundraising ideas available:

In addition, Book Aid International has included resources to help schools bring Africa into the classroom this World Book Day such as African maps and games. These are also available online:

Book Aid International’s Head of Fundraising Hannah Watson said: “Last year, schools across the country raised over £120,000 on World Book Day. That’s enough to send 60,000 books to African readers who are lacking books in their homes, schools and communities. Those books have the potential to be are life-changing, particularly for children, so we hope that this year schools, parents and readers across the country will help us reach even more readers who need books.”

It costs Book Aid International just £2 to send a brand new book to a library or school in Africa, so every Pound raised on World Book Day really does make a difference. The full suite of resources, costumes and more are available at:

Every year, Book Aid International provides up to one million new books donated by UK publishers to communities where books are scarce. Two thirds of these books are for children, many of whom do not own a single book and may never have seen a picture book before a delivery from Book Aid International to their library or school. Book Aid International is a supported charity of World Book Day.



For further information, pictures or comment please contact Emma Taylor, Head of Communications at Book Aid International.


t: 020 7326 5800

About Book Aid International
Book Aid International is the UK’s leading international book donation and library development charity. The charity works in partnership with libraries in communities where books are scarce providing new books, resources and training to support an environment in which reading for pleasure, study and lifelong learning can flourish.

Visit for more information or join the conversation on twitter: @bookaid.

About World Book Day
World Book Day was designated by UNESCO as a worldwide celebration of books and reading, and is marked in over 100 countries around the globe. 2017 marks the 20th anniversary of World Book Day being celebrated in the UK.

World Book Day is a partnership of publishers, booksellers and interested parties who work together to promote books and reading for the personal enrichment and enjoyment of all. A main aim of World Book Day in the UK and Ireland is to encourage children to explore the pleasures of books and reading by providing them with the opportunity to have a book of their own.

To mark the day, school children are entitled to receive a World Book Day £1 Book Token (or equivalent €1.50 Book Token in Ireland) supplied by National Book Tokens Ltd. The £1 Book Token can be exchanged for one of ten (eleven in Ireland) specially published World Book Day £1 Books, or is redeemable against any book or audio book of their choice costing £2.99 or more at a participating bookshop or book club. The World Book Day £1 Book Token will be valid from Monday 27 February–Sunday 26 March 2017.

Visit for more information and follow @WorldBookDayUK on Twitter or like for the latest news.

About National Book Tokens
National Book Tokens are the perfect gift for book lovers everywhere and are the only gift cards sold and accepted in bookshops across the UK and Ireland, including all the major chains and local independents. As proud sponsors of World Book Day, National Book Tokens supports lifelong learning and improving literacy and access to reading for everyone. Visit for more information.

The World Book Day 2017 books: