Our Commitments in Action

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Donating Books to Communities in Need at a Time of Crisis

U.K.
Commitments

Commitments
Commitments

Donating Books to Communities in Need at a Time of Crisis

We distributed free books to some of the communities most affected by the COVID-19 crisis, including families on low incomes and senior citizens facing isolation. By getting thousands of books into the hands of people who face particular hardship or distress during this challenging time, our aim was to provide mental stimulation, company, and comfort at a time when people need the power of books more than ever. We distributed books through a partnership with the community platform Neighbourly, which supports a national network of food banks and community causes that deliver food parcels to people’s homes, as well as grassroots groups that support senior citizens. To learn more about how we teamed up with Neighbourly to offer relief and escapism in challenging times, click here.

U.S.

16.7 Million

BOOKS DONATED


Penguin Random House U.S. has donated more than 16.7 million books since 2014, the company’s first full year as PRH.
U.K.

£60,000

DONATED


Penguin Random House U.K. donated £60,000 to the Book Trade Charity fundraiser to support booksellers in the U.K. and Ireland experiencing hardship due to COVID-19.
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DK U.S. Donates More Than 3,000 Books During Lockdown

U.S.
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DK U.S. Donates More Than 3,000 Books During Lockdown

Nurturing curiosity and supporting causes is a top priority for DK colleagues, and the U.S. team has made several book donations to organizations that promote literacy and serve a crucial role during the COVID-19 outbreak. We donated 2,000 books to First Book to support children affected by U.S. school closures, and gave 300 books to Bess the Book Bus, a Florida-based mobile literacy outreach, to be distributed across the country. Having recently visited the Lower East Side Girls Club, which helps girls and young women on the Lower East Side of New York City, we provided books to be included in care packages for members who may have lost their safe spaces because of the pandemic.

DK also supported two nonprofits in California. To encourage science education, we donated STEM-related titles to Community Resources for Science, which serves schools in low-income communities, and donated more than 500 books to Project Books and Blankies, which provides books to shelters, literacy and after-school programs, classrooms, libraries, and more.

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Equipping Young People for the Future

IRELAND
U.K.
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Equipping Young People for the Future

Penguin Talks is a program of free creative talks for young people across the U.K. and Ireland. Attendees are given the opportunity to hear from and ask questions to a world-renowned thinker, writer, or influential figure from our family of authors. Held in local schools, Penguin Talks is meant to help equip students by introducing them to new ideas and perspectives. Each Penguin Talk is published in full online, together with free curriculum-based resources for teachers, in order to enable young people in classrooms to engage with the themes and issues discussed. Former Penguin Talks have included Michelle Obama speaking on the power of education and self-belief, Yuval Noah Harari on the future of the world of work, and Margaret Atwood on protest and activism. To learn more about the program, click here.

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Penguin Random House Partners With the NYPL and Author Jhumpa La

U.S.
Commitments


Penguin Random House Partners With the NYPL and Author Jhumpa La

We proudly continue our partnership with the New York Public Library (NYPL). The New York Public Library program closely aligns with our ongoing commitment to support a culture of reading and build the widest audience possible for our authors. Our partnership with the NYPL will ensure that New Yorkers can utilize the vital services provided by their libraries free of charge, including access to books, computers, early literacy workshops, and job training classes. This year, we teamed up with Knopf author Jhumpa Lahiri to encourage readers to participate in the campaign and make a donation to the NYPL. In an email sent out to donors, Jhumpa discussed the role libraries played in broadening her literary world and jumpstarting her writing career:  “Wherever I have lived, whatever I have studied or pursued, libraries have always been my true home.”   

Throughout the summer, the NYPL has gradually expanded service across all of their open grab-and-go locations in the Bronx, Manhattan, and Staten Island, where patrons can now browse for books and reserve time to use public computers to browse the Internet and search their catalog. Click here to learn more.

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Donating Spanish Language Books to the REFORMA Children in Crisis Project

U.S.
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Donating Spanish Language Books to the REFORMA Children in Crisis Project

In the summer of 2021, we donated nearly 2,000 Spanish language books to REFORMA’s Children In Crisis Project, a program that addresses the needs of asylum-seeking children arriving at the United States border. Among the titles donated included were El cielo, las estrellas y la noche by Jean Pierre Verdet (Altea); 100 genios del balón by Alberto Lati (Plan B);  El beso de la traición by Erin Beaty (Alfaguara Juvenil); 15 consejos malvados para ser tu propia superheroína by Vania Bachur (Altea); and Historia en meme by Guillermo Perez Romero (Plan B).  

For years, REFORMA has been working to provide Books & Library Connections for Unaccompanied Refugee Children through its Children In Crisis Project. REFORMA: The National Association to Promote Library and Information Services to Latinos and the Spanish-Speaking, is an affiliate of the American Library Association, promoting the development of library collections to include Spanish-language and Latino oriented materials; the recruitment of more bilingual and bicultural library professionals and support staff; the development of library services and programs that meet the needs of the Latino community; the establishment of a national information and support network among individuals who share our goals; the education of the U.S. Latino population in regards to the availability and types of library services; and lobbying efforts to preserve existing library resource centers serving the interests of Latinos.

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Raising Awareness to End Gun Violence

U.S.
Commitments

Raising Awareness to End Gun Violence

We reprised our partnership with Every Town for Gun Safety in honor of  National Gun Violence Awareness Day on June 4 and in support of #WearOrange weekend, to help raise awareness and send a powerful message to end gun violence. 

Colleagues were encouraged to show individual support through participation in a Special Unlimited Matching Gift Program the weekend of June 4. 

Most of all, Penguin Random House employees were asked to raise awareness of #WearOrange. Whether they posted on social media with tags to end gun violence or sharedPenguin Random House’s National Gun Violence Awareness Day Book List, we came together to spread the important message of ending gun violence.

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Celebrating International Literacy Day with Worldreader

U.S.
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Celebrating International Literacy Day with Worldreader

To celebrate International Literacy Day, we reunited with our longstanding partner, Worldreader, to help promote literacy and the joy of reading around the world. With every book purchased on our website, we donated $1 to Worldreader, up to $10K.

Worldreader works to champion digital reading, especially in Sub-Saharan Africa. This year, International Literacy Day was celebrated under the theme, “Literacy for a human-centered recovery: Narrowing the Digital Divide.” As we saw the way we  move in an even more digital direction due to COVID-19, we find it necessary to provide children with digital access to books as the world adapts.

Since 2010, we have donated hundreds of thousands of e-books to Worldreader to help millions of children read around the world. We are committed to advancing literacy, especially in communities where there are not many books available. Together, Penguin Random House and Worldreader help create a world where everyone is a reader.

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Donating Books to Underprivileged Children in Manchester

U.K.
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Donating Books to Underprivileged Children in Manchester

DK donated 1,000 copies of the illustrated children’s book Life Cycles: Everything from Start to Finish to Manchester United Foundation. The books were distributed to underprivileged children and families in the Manchester region for Christmas as part of the foundation’s “Santa’s Red Helpers Campaign” in charity packs compiled by the British football club’s foundation.

The foundation of the first league football club is committed to supporting underprivileged children and youth. Players, staff and fans of the traditional club united to make a difference as Santa’s Red Helpers in order to bring some joy to these families.

Rebecca Smart, Managing Director, Publishing, at DK, said: “We are proud to support Manchester United Foundation and the families they work with by donating books for their Christmas gift bags. We are passionate about inspiring curiosity and bringing people to books, and we hope that our donation will have a positive impact on these children’s lives.” 

Matt Johnson, Operations Director at Manchester United Foundation, expressed his gratitude for the support and book donation: “It is so important for young people to understand the importance of education and reading.”


See More Commitments


Reducing the Environmental Impact of Our Freight and Shipping


Hosting the Voices for Justice Virtual Speaker Series


Volunteering Virtually with City Harvest for the Holidays

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