Support western Sydney authors and readers in Booktober

Get reading: WestWords executive director Michael Campbell is encouraging everyone to get on board and pick up a book this Booktober. Picture: Chris Lane
Get reading: WestWords executive director Michael Campbell is encouraging everyone to get on board and pick up a book this Booktober. Picture: Chris Lane

"In Dry July you look after your body, in Booktober, you take care of your mind and your spirit."

WestWords is encouraging all locals to set a goal to read more books this October - and help raise money for the important organisation.

WestWords, which is based in Wedderburn and serves the entire greater western Sydney area, works closely with writers and artists to celebrate people, places and cultures at the heart of the region, as well as working to ensure all children have access to books.

People are being urged to pledge a number of books to read this October to encourage donations from sponsors.

Executive director Michael Campbell said apart from expanding readers' minds, WestWords had other reasons for spruiking Booktober.

"We need to be able to see out stories reflected back to us, which is why we're encouraging people to read Australian literature, and having a months-long focus on Australian literature is such a valuable thing," he said.

"At WestWords we are exclusively western Sydney - that's our focus. In our work we come across young children who don't have books of their own, who haven't had a chance to have their own book. The haven't been able to curl up in a corner somewhere and find themselves in books and find new worlds to experience. Books offer a gateway to their potential. So Booktober is a way to fundraise in order to provide books for those kids."

Books offer a gateway to kids' potential.

Michael Campbell, WestWords executive director

Mr Campbell said WestWords ran more than 100 activities every year, and last year engaged with more than 22,000 children. He said they were well aware of where books were most needed, and which communities would benefit most.

Mr Campbell said there were a number of ways that locals could take part in Booktober.

"There are various ways you can contribute," he said.

"You can read yourself, you can get other people to sponsor you to read, or, if you strongly believe in how wonderful books are for children in our world, you can donate directly to WestWords."

Mr Campbell said there were a number of reading lists on the WestWords website which highlighted wonderful books to read at every stage of life. He said there were plenty by Western Sydney authors and there was also a spotlight on Indigenous authors.

More information: westwords.com.au.