Marcus Rashford, the National Literacy Trust, WH Smith and Macmillan Children’s Books are to partner on an initiative aimed at ensuring every child has access to their own book at home.
WH Smith shops will act as donation points for customers to donate to the scheme, with funds going to the National Literacy Trust reading charity.
The retailer will also gift a copy of Manchester United footballer Rashford’s book You Are A Champion: How To Be The Best You Can Be for every one that is sold.
The National Literacy Trust will distribute the books to “tackle literacy issues in communities at a local level across the UK”, according to a statement from WH Smith.
Rashford said: “Enjoying reading can’t just be a privilege; all children should be able to access books, no matter what their background.
“Having good literacy skills supports children to succeed in life and everyone should have the opportunity to discover a love of reading.
“This last year has shown us just what we can achieve when we work together.
“By joining forces with WH Smith and the National Literacy Trust we are giving everyone the best opportunity to get involved in supporting getting every child reading.
“There’s a WH Smith on nearly every high street in the UK, they’re online and also in major travel hubs so we’re making this really accessible and would encourage everyone who is able to, to get involved.
“Everyone can play a role, big or small.”
National Literacy Trust chief executive Jonathan Douglas said: “Marcus Rashford is an extraordinary campaigner of the societal imbalances that can have a lifelong impact on disadvantaged children.
“We hope this brilliant WH Smith initiative, in partnership with Macmillan Children’s Books and the National Literacy Trust, will make essential steps in addressing one of the key barriers to literacy and learning.”