Book trade charity BTBS praises the SYP


David Hicks, the Chief Executive of the Book Trade Benevolent Society, has written to the SYP to thank the society for its ongoing support of the charity.  In particular, David thanked the SYP for holding a pub quiz last year which raised funds for the BTBS, and for assisting with the packing away of the many books donated to the BTBS during the 2008 London Book Fair.  This support is very much needed, as David writes that "this last year has seen ever-increasing demands on our Grants programme, with financial support from BTBS to book trade colleagues in need increasing to £95,000 – a marked increase over 2007.   We have helped people with acute and long-term illnesses and disabilities, provided funding for training to people who have been made redundant, provided support for carers and assisted in some heart-rending situations brought about by terminal illness. You will appreciate that our responsibility for confidentiality prevents us giving too much detail, so I trust this brief overview is sufficient to inform you that BTBS is a cause worthy of support, with some two hundred people a year benefiting from our services.

Funds raised through donations or events are as always being put to good use.  In addition to our work through the Grants Programme, the Society's resources at The Retreat, the charity's retirement and pre-retirement accommodation, continue to offer help to colleagues from the book trade who find themselves in difficult personal circumstances and need our housing provision.  While the current useable accommodation is now at full occupancy, we have nearly completed work upgrading another four of the bungalows, which were built in the 1960s and are starting to show their age.  Such development is funded by specific donations from trade-related charitable trusts, and allows us to provide better quality, and more appropriate, accommodation without "˜competing' for funds from our Grants budget.  The Book Trade Helpline also continues to respond to many calls for help, personal, financial or work-related."

The SYP will indeed be continuing to support the invalueable work of the BTBS throughout 2009 and beyond.