BANFF – One hundred and fifty books are being donated to childrens' hospitals, schools and libraries all across the country thanks to the Royal Baby Book Drive.
The book drive began in honour of the birth of royal baby, Archie. The team behind The Wardens song-inspired children’s book, Rocky Mountain Rangers: Guardians of the Wild, organized the book drive.
Ayesha Clough, former journalist and now, publisher at Red Barn Books, said she always considered sending a copy to Meghan Markle’s son once the book was completed.
“But of course, baby Archie is probably getting gifts from all over the world and he probably has everything that he needs and then some,” Clough said.
That is when the idea of the Royal Baby Archie Book Drive was born. Along with sending baby Archie a copy of the book, Clough wanted to create a unique gift for him by getting the book into the hands of children across the nation.
“We had the Kickstarter campaign going for the book in the first place and the book publisher, Ayesha – she just had a brainwave of trying to get some of these books to children in hospitals and those types of places,” Ray Schmidt, one of the band members of The Wardens, said.
As of last Wednesday (June 5), the Kickstarter campaign reached its goal of $20,000, from 15 donors for the book drive initiative. Each donor was given the option of specifying where the books will be donated. Donors will also have their name inscribed in the Archie’s Royal Edition of the book.
As a result of the campaign, 150 books will be donated to hospitals, libraries and schools from coast-to-coast, including places like Victoria, Halifax and Inuvik.
"That’s the way that we are in our music as well as this book. We want [to bring] the book into people’s hands. If we can brighten someone’s day up who’s not feeling too well with something that’s special to us and it can be special to them,” Schmidt said.
With the success of the book drive, Clough said that this could be an ongoing thing for Red Barn Books and the upcoming books it The Warden’s series.
“It was so well received and it seems like people really got on-board with it, so I think we might have to make it a tradition and maybe just even offer it regularly on the Red Barn Books website as an option for people throughout the year. Not just some special campaign. I think we might have to just turn this into a thing,” Clough said.
The Rocky Mountain Rangers: Guardians of the Wild will be available this coming September online and in bookstores. The book can also be reserved through Red Barns Books Facebook page.