Friends of Doorstep Library

2020-2021 is our 10th Birthday!

We are proud to say that we have been fighting inequality in education since 2010, introducing the magic and benefits of reading to children in disadvantaged areas of London. In the last ten years we have lent over 110,000 books, to over 1600 children and 670 families.

In these difficult times when children and families have been spending so much time at home and away from their friends and family – reading has never been more valued.  So this year, to celebrate a decade of Doorstep Library, we are asking the question #WhereDoWordsTakeYOU?

Here we share quotes from some of our friends and supporters – we hope these words inspire you to take your own journeys.


“My childhood wasn’t easy. My dad had been badly affected by his wartime experiences and I was often anxious at school. I felt different from other kids and struggled with my schoolwork. But luckily I knew how to escape… I would go to the library and spend a long time searching for exactly the right book. When I found that book I would know. It was as if that book had been waiting especially for me. Waiting to invite me inside. I would find a quiet corner and when I opened the cover, it felt like opening a door into another world, inhabited by extraordinary people. Books were my escape hatch. Books were my education. Books were my lifeline.

Later, when I left school, I discovered that being different is a strength not a weakness. As I grew in confidence, I discovered my abilities as a writer and an artist, and it seemed natural to create my own books.
Guess what? There’s a book out there waiting especially for you. All you have to do is find it. All you have to do is open the cover and step inside. Books make us wiser, kinder, funnier and happier.
Words are wings, so fly away.”


“I LOVE stories. Words have whisked me on so many adventures, whether it was a story told by my big sisters, an audiobook, or a real book made out of paper and ink.
Words have taken me on moonlit broomstick rides, through secret passages, into shark-infested waters and even travelling back in time.
There’s nowhere words can’t take you! Words are MAGIC.”


“Words take me out of my head into a world where anything is possible. If I looked out of the window and saw two dogs drive past in a red sports car, heading to the beach, I’d be very surprised. But if I opened a book to find them right there on the page, I’d think to myself – but of course! Why ever not? I wonder what ice creams they will choose when they get there…

When I’m writing a story it’s slightly different. Words take me right INTO my head. I am looking for how I feel, what I care about, what makes me laugh, the little things I have noticed and remembered.
And that’s what so exciting about Doorstep Library: in helping a generation of readers they are also creating a whole new world of storytellers. It’s their stories I want to hear most!”

Film/TV Director

“Books have always been my cosy place where I can fully relax and get lost in a story.
It’s also a way I get to live in someone else’s skin for a bit, see the world through different eyes. Books are wonderful ways of generating empathy. I am able to understand others joy, fear, hopes and dreams more deeply and it makes me feel like a more enriched person.”

AM, Deputy Mayor for Education and Childcare

“I love reading. As a child reading books transported me to different worlds and different places – it fired my imagination and opened my mind to new ideas and new perspectives. I am always reading, both for my job and for pleasure. Language is important as it’s how we connect and understand each other.

Reading with my own children was a joy, a quiet time away from the bustle of daily life, looking at pictures and words, discovering new characters and stories. I saw how reading together developed their language and listening skills and helped them become independent learners. Above all, reading is fun!”


“Words take me on a magic carpet ride through the back of wardrobes and down rabbit holes, across the Misty Mountains and past the second star to the right, and straight on till morning.”

Chairman of Oscar’s Book Prize

“Reading is my life just as much as writing. I wade through words every day and then relax with more of them at night. Reading is also an expression of love that takes me back to turning pages with my grandma. Through Oscar’s Book Prize we want to encourage every parent, grandparent and carer to find the time for that same shared experience.”

Ben Brooks

“Again and again, I learn about people whose lives have been shaped by the books they read as children. This can happen in so many ways. Passions are sparked, confidence is found, role models are discovered, ideas are born. When we’re young, books multiply the size and scope of our worlds immeasurably. At least I know that’s what they did for me. Sitting up at night reading about polar expeditions, wizards, and medieval food, set me on the course to becoming not just someone who loves books, but someone who is curious, open, and capable of imagining themselves in the shoes of others.

That’s why I think the work of Doorstep Library has so much power. When you bring books into a young person’s life, you let them know they can write their story.”