Applications are Open: Children’s Books Ireland offering schools new books for their libraries

April 2024
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ECAR Scoil Naomh Padraig
Selection of books from the ECAR programme at Scoil Naomh Padraig

Applications are open for our book-gifting projects 2024-2025, inviting schools across Ireland to apply for hundreds of books for their school library, class sets for their students to keep, visits from authors and illustrators, and more.

We believe that every child has the right to be a reader. We want every school library to be well-stocked with modern, diverse books, and for every school library to have the appropriate resources to guide and inspire young readers.

Unfortunately, many schools still lack the resources needed to make this a reality, and we know that not every school has a dedicated library on site.

That's where we come in! 

Free To Be Me library in Leixlip Educate Together National School.
William Fry's Christabelle Feeney and students at the launch of a Free To Be Me library in Leixlip Educate Together National School.

What could your school receive?

  • Hundreds of new, excellent, and diverse books for your school library
  • Books for students to own and keep
  • Artist visits from Champions of Reading (well-known Irish children’s and young people’s authors and illustrators)
  • Tailored resource packs and classroom materials
  • Training and support from dedicated Children’s Books Ireland staff

Our book-gifting programmes and awards focus on schools in need or experiencing disadvantage and give students equal opportunities to read excellent books, bring artists into the classroom to boost their enjoyment of reading, and support teachers with resources to promote reading for pleasure and creative engagement with books.

We are particularly interested in hearing from schools that are already making efforts to promote reading for joy, and diversity and inclusion, with what limited resources they do have. There are numerous programmes on offer, and we will endeavour to match winning schools to the most suitable one.

Secondary school applications: Are now closed

The open call-out to secondary schools for our school book-gifting programmes in 2024-2025 opened on Monday 29th April -  Friday 7th June at 5pm. 

Primary school applications: 

The open call-out to primary schools for our school book-gifting programmes in 2024-2025 opened on Monday 27th May, and will close on Monday 1st July at 5pm. 

All primary and secondary schools in the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland are invited to apply. Applications are assessed based on their particular needs and ambition for the projects, with the winners being notified throughout the 2024-2025 academic year.

    Ashwin Chacko with students at Divine Mercy Senior School, Lucan
    Ashwin Chacko leading a Monster Doodle with students of Divine Mercy Senior National School.

    Book-gifting Application Information Session 

    Watch the recording of our webinar below. During this session we:

    • Explain the different book-gifting programmes you will be applying to
    • Go through this year's application questions
    • Give tips and advice on how to improve your application.
      Book-gifting Applications Information Webinar

      Hear from some of the schools we worked in 2023-2024

      'I can not thank you enough for this experience for our school. It is not only giving us access to a vast array of new titles but is helping in re-establishing a space for everyone in our school community to get lost in a book. It is only the start for us.'

      - Sarah McNamara, Roscommon Community College (Everyone a Reader)

      'Our delivery of books & promo materials arrived into the school last week and we were blown away by the quality and volume received! To say we are excited to add these books into our existing library would be a complete understatement. We cannot wait to get stuck into the project over the coming weeks and months!'

      - Sinéad Murphy, Carrigeen National School. (Every Child a Reader)

      Rush and Lusk - ECAR
      Teacher from Rush and Lusk Educate Together National School with students and their new books.

      'Children’s Books Ireland, we are indebted to you and Aviva for the amazing new books you have donated to our school. We recently opened a new library here in Radharc na Mara Primary School. Our library has been named, “Adventures in Bookland” and your books have pride of place in the new facility. The children of our school are a unique, diverse and engaged group of people. Your book selection mirrored that and already the books have been in high demand during the weekly class visits to “Bookland”. We are extremely grateful and forever fortunate to be one of your lucky recipients.'

      - Keith Joyce, Radharc na Mara Primary School (Aviva Free to Be Me Little Libraries)

      If you need more information about your application or about our book-gifting projects in 2024, please contact Book-gifting Manager, Aoife McDonnell on aoife.mcdonnell@childrensbooksireland.ie