The Scottish blogosphere's Kate Higgins, who writes for Better Nation and her own blog A Burdz Eye View works for Children 1st. She's come up with a cracking idea for Christmas - raising money to buy books for vulnerable kids. As she says herself:
Books were a constant companion in my childhood - they still are. They've opened up worlds, ideas, knowledge and adventures. They've made me laugh, cry, tremble and learn - sometimes all at the same time.
But some children in Scotland aren't so lucky and miss out on this vital part of childhood. Some families can't afford to buy books or lack the skills and confidence to share and enjoy reading with their child. Yet, reading - and reading well - can make a real difference to vulnerable children's lives.
It's something CHILDREN 1ST - the charity I work for - understands. We know how important reading is and work with parents to help them help their children read. Often, it's simple pleasures like this that provide real joy. Reading together can forge strong bonds and give vulnerable children a better start in life, and better life chances.Today (25 November) is Kilts for Kids Day, our national fundraising day where people celebrate all things Scottish and raise money for CHILDREN 1ST. Well, I'm not much of a runner. Even less of a baker. And I definitely can't sing.
But I do read. And I know you do too. And together I reckon we can raise enough to buy vulnerable children supported by CHILDREN 1ST services a book this Christmas. All you have to do is give £10.
Gift aid it and it becomes £12.50. £7.50 will be used to buy a child a book and the rest will go to help CHILDREN 1ST pay for things like the cost of a support worker who will encourage a parent to read regularly with their child, or for materials that can help an abused child recover from their trauma by expressing themselves through art, writing or play.
We've got less than a month but I'm sure we'll manage it. Because I know that you know how important books are and what a difference they can make to a child's life. And I know you'll give, and then encourage your friends and family to do so too.
Oh, and why not share your favourite book from your childhood when you make your donation?
Thanks for your support.Books were an essential part of my childhood. I was rarely to be found without my head in one. From the St Clare's and Mallory Towers books, to the Chalet School, to the Secret Seven, when I got a bit older Agatha Christie and Jane Austen, Little Women, The Narnia books. And when I hit my teens, it was, sadly, political biographies. Roy Jenkins certainly improved my vocabulary - you couldn't read anything of his without a dictionary by your side.
For Anna, it's been Jez Alborough and the "Duck in the Truck" books (if you've never read Fix it Duck, you quite literally haven't lived), to the Chronicles of Ancient Darkness to the Warrior cat series via Harry Potter and Lemony Snicket.
Books have enriched my life every day - and I know how important they are which is why I'm so passionately behind Kate's efforts.
You can donate here and follow her progress on Twitter here.
Please give generously - and if you're another blogger please write about this yourself and encourage all your readers to take part in this worthwhile project.