HarperCollins Publishers has launched #WhyIRead, a social media and charity initiative timed to the publisher's 200th anniversary that aims to highlight literacy.
As part of the campaign, the publisher asked a number of its authors—including Robyn Carr, Michael Chabon, Bernard Cornwell, and Neil Gaiman—to speak on why they read and write and what books influenced them. Answers are hosted on a special section of Harper Collins's website, and readers are invited to join the conversation by using the hashtag #WhyIRead The company will also donate $200,000 to a number of literacy-related charities selected by its employees, which include First Book, National Coalition Against Censorship, Room to Read, United Through Reading, and We Need Diverse Books.
“HarperCollins has had a long, storied history supporting authors and the printed word, and we’ve been passionate about supporting literacy and education since the company was founded in 1817,” HarperCollins president and CEO Brian Murray said in a statement. “The positive impact on literacy rates during the past two centuries alongside HarperCollins’ innovations and growth lets us know it’s a more-than-worthy cause to continue to support.”
The company will also collaborate with First Book on a consumer sweepstakes, which will run from today through June 7. Grand prize winners, who will win an iPad mini with a collection of HarperCollins e-books, will be invited to recommend a First Book–eligible school or program serving kids in need to receive a donation of 1,000 books.