Leeds school boy raises money to buy new books for the local library he loves

Drupta from Whinmoor raised £150 for new Leeds Libraries books

When his local library in Whinmoor closed during the lockdown, eight-year-old Drupta Vangapally was determined that when it reopened it would be better than ever.

Book fan Drupta, who goes to Highfield Primary School in Whinmoor, has been a member of Leeds Libraries from a young age and a regular visitor to nearby Whinmoor Library, borrowing an armful of books each time.

Drupta said: “I love going to the library. My favourites are the Horrible Histories books, but I find it difficult to choose from the other books when there are hundreds and hundreds on the shelves.

“When the library closed during the lockdown, I was upset but I knew that it would open again, so I had the idea to raise money to buy some new books for other children to enjoy.

“I raised £150 by reading my favourite books online in return for donations, and Leeds Libraries doubled this. I got to choose all the new books, and I picked the sorts of books that my classmates would enjoy, such as Roald Dahl, Harry Potter and Horrible Histories.”

The books chosen by Drupta for Whinmoor Library have also been purchased for all the other libraries in Leeds, so that children across the whole city can enjoy his selection. His name is also included on book plates inside all the books that Drupta raised money to buy.

Drupta and his brother Reyansh were also both nominated in this year’s Child Friendly Leeds Awards, in recognition of their contribution to making Leeds a child friendly city by supporting their local library.

Joining the library is a fantastic way to introduce children to the exciting world of books and reading. It’s free to join and borrowing books and other items is free as well. All children who join the library will also receive a colourful new-look library card, designed by children’s book illustrator Nick Sharratt.

This week is also national Libraries Week, which this year is highlighting the part that libraries play in inspiring learning for all, so there’s no better time to join.

Leeds Libraries are great places for:

  • Children to improve their literacy skills and their confidence with reading
  • Inspiring youngsters to explore new skills and hobbies, such as coding and crafting
  • Finding resources to help children with their homework and school projects, and
  • Spending time together as a family as well and enjoying the free or low-cost family-friendly events including theatre, music, crafts and storytelling.

Andrea Ellison, Senior Librarian at Leeds City Council, said:

“Children can join the library for free as soon as they are born, and there are activities for babies and toddlers all the way up to teenagers and young adults. And with many families in Leeds now on a budget, our libraries are also fantastic places where children can simply spend time with their families, as well as enjoying events and activities that are either low cost or completely free.”

Councillor Mary Harland, Leeds City Council executive member for communities, said:

“I would like to thank Drupta for his fantastic fundraising efforts for Whinmoor Library, which was then supported and extended by Leeds Libraries. He is a great example of how libraries can inspire and fire the imaginations of children of all ages. So, if parents haven’t yet registered their children with Leeds Libraries, I would encourage them to go along to their local library or sign up online.”

Joining is quick and easy. Go to www.leeds.gov.uk/libraries. To find out about the fantastic free Leeds Libraries activities and events for children and families, go to www.leedsinspired.co.uk/collection/whats-leeds-libraries

ENDS

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