BookSwapBoxes is a new project that aims to bring people together in local neighbourhoods to discover and share a love of reading and help families enjoy books at home, regardless of income.
Neighbourhood BookSwapBoxes will feature donated books housed in attractive and enticing colourful boxes (made from upcycled furniture to resemble beach huts, dovecotes or funky bookcases) and freely available to anyone who wants to read them.
Swappers will be encouraged to leave comments, feedback and book reviews in the boxes to help shape the future development of the project.
Community centres, supported housing projects, schools, supermarkets and day centres will host the BookSwapBoxes and the volunteers will look after the display of books to interest their specific community – e.g. children’s books for toddler groups.
The BookSwapBoxes will be designed, made and decorated by volunteers and groups supported by our skilled tutor. Each will be unique and reflect its community placement.
If you or your community group are interested in hosting a BookSwapBox please get in touch with us.
Our first BookSwapBox was at Rock House, a non-profit coworking space for dozens of small creative and digital enterprises. They wanted their Box to be a set of shelves that fitted with their decor.
Churchwood school pupils made a theatre-themed bookshelf with HFS as part of the “Space to Create” programme run by Craftimation Factory, Ed Boxall and Culture Shift.
Pathways worked with our tutor Ron to help make their beach-hut themed box. The box is outside and helps the project relate to their neighbours. Pathways say “An invite was sent out to our local community inviting them to use our beach hut book swap, so far there has been lots of interest and it’s exciting to see how much the books change, we love finding new books and meeting people who use the beach hut.
“During this project we learnt lots of DIY skills including how to drill, how to put in screws, how to paint, how to cement a post, how to make invites and more; these skills with the skills we will gain in keeping the stock fresh and keeping the Community Book Swap going will be valuable to our futures.”