The Marcus Rashford Book Club will given children access to reading that Rashford himself didn’t have growing up | Pool/Getty Images
Manchester United forward Marcus Rashford is continuing his exceptional off-field work by launching a book club for children between the ages of 5-18, aiming to increase access to books and ‘equip all children with resources to develop life skills’.
The Marcus Rashford Book Club has been created in partnership with Macmillan Children’s Books and will see a range of titles published, as well as a recommending programme to champions work from creatives of all backgrounds.
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Thank you for being on this journey with me @MacmillanKidsUK ♥️ pic.twitter.com/pHRhOoJoKK
— Marcus Rashford MBE (@MarcusRashford) November 17, 2020
Rashford has admitted that he only really started to read at 17 because books were not something his family could budget for when putting food on the table was more important. The 23-year-old said that reading since then has changed his ‘outlook and mentality’ and wants to provide children from struggling families the opportunity to have what he missed out on from a young age.
“There were times as a child the escapism of reading could have really helped me,” Rashford explained. “I want this escapism for all children. Not just those who can afford it.
“We know that there are approximately 400,000 children across the UK today that have never owned a book, children that are in vulnerable environments. That has to change. My books are, and will be, for every child, even if I have to deliver them myself. We will reach them.”
Rashford has become a national hero for his campaigning | Clive Brunskill/Getty Images
Rashford also said, “Let our children read that they are not alone and enable them to dream. Equip them for obstacles and adversities they might face. Allow them to relate to characters by making sure people of all race, religion and sex are depicted correctly and representative of modern society.”
Rashford has already become a national hero this year thanks to his tireless campaigning against child food poverty, which has twice forced the UK government into U-turns over free school meals and extending the programme over holidays in summer and now at Christmas.
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