Free Books Campaign Is Coming To Hackney For Third Annual Literary Festival

Free Books Campaign Is Coming To Hackney For Third Annual Literary Festival

June 12, 2024

Sofia Akel is on a two-pronged mission. Spearheading the Free Books Campaign, her aim is to improve literacy rates of children in low-income families and also increase access to books written by authors of colour. Since founding the Campaign in 2020, 8,000 brand-new books have been delivered to communities all over London.

This year, Sofia and the team are hosting the third annual literary book festival. Taking place in Hackney from July 19-21, the Free Books Festival will focus on storytelling in all its forms—from visual arts to movement, classic literature, anime, gaming, music and more—in a bid to challenge the traditional format of literature festivals.

This year's festival is hugely ambitious; as well as providing an entirely free bookstore for all attendees, there will be a creche for parents and sign-language interpreters to ensure inclusivity. However, for the festival to reach its goals, they are calling on the community to invest in the campaign first, so donations to the Free Books Campaign are encouraged.

Since 2012 over 800 libraries have been permanently closed in this country, and at GCSE level less than 1% of students are studying a book written by an author of colour. These stats alone show the importance of the Free Books Campaign, and how crucial your donation will be.

Support the Free Books Campaign now.

Words: Dwayne Wilks
Photography: Cebo Luthuli