The BOLD GIRLS schools programme in partnership with KPMG introduces books featuring strong girls and women with agency, opinions and power to pupils in participating schools. We have brought this message of equality to hundreds of school children since the launch of the BOLD GIRLS campaign in 2018.

Photo of three uniformed students with BOLD GIRLS face paint sharing a BOLD GIRLS reading guide
BOLD GIRLS from St. Mary's National School Dorset Street at the launch of the BOLD GIRLS reading guide

On International Women's Day (8 March) in 2018, Children's Books Ireland launched the BOLD GIRLS campaign to mark the centenary of women's suffrage in Ireland. BOLD GIRLS highlighted children's books featuring strong, intelligent, self-possessed female characters, and celebrated female Irish authors and illustrators who have made an exceptional contribution to the canon of Irish children's literature.

Partnering with KPMG and their KPMG Family for Literacy project enabled us to bring the BOLD GIRLS project to four schools across Ireland in 2018. On International Women's Day, four schools – St Mary's Primary School in Dublin, Scoil an Spioraid Naoimh in Cork, Galway Educate Together and Elmgrove Primary School in Belfast – received a launch day package. The package consisted of a library of 100 BOLD GIRLS books and an event in their school where KPMG staff and volunteers read to students and ran Monster Doodles and quizzes.

The launch was followed by a four-week KPMG staff-led reading initiative developed by Children's Books Ireland and author, programmer and creative writing facilitator Sarah Webb.  As part of this initiative, KPMG volunteers visited the schools once a week, sharing books from the BOLD GIRLS reading guide  and engaging the students in activities that encouraged them to think critically about the books in different ways – visually, narratively and historically. The project highlighted the existing gender stereotypes children may have encountered in the books they read and introduced them to strong, empowered female authors, illustrators, real-life heroines and fictional characters. The project was repeated in 2019 with further schools

In September 2020, BOLD GIRLS evolved again and the BOLD GIRLS meets 20×20 initiative was born. 20×20 is about creating a cultural shift in our perception of girls and women in sport, and aims to increase media coverage of women in sport, female participation in sport and attendance at women's games and events, all by 20%.

As part of this project, a new schools programme was rolled out in ten KPMG partner schools. We identified a number of excellent books for children that highlight women in sport, telling the real-life stories of women who have proved that gender is not a barrier to success and inspire the next generation of Irish sportswomen. Each participating class received a bundle of 25 of these books along with a specially commissioned exclusive video from Jacqui Hurley, Irish athlete, sports manager, sports broadcaster, and author of Girls Play Too: Inspiring Stories of Irish Sportswomen.

This project is delivered to KPMG partner schools as such, there is no open call for applications.

Schools receive a selection of books (for their school library) along with a tailored reading initiative developed by Children's Books Ireland and delivered by KPMG staff volunteers.

Selected KPMG partner schools are eligible to avail of this programme. 

There is no open call for applications to this programme. For information on school book-gifting programmes with open calls for applications, please see Every Child A Reader and Bookbag.

Please contact should you have any further queries in regards to this or any of our book gifting initiatives.

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