More than sixty schools and nurseries on the Island have taken up an offer by Medina Books to receive a free copy of our book ‘A Germ’s Journey’ about the importance of handwashing to get rid of germs.

Public Health Initiative

A Germ’s Journey was written as part of a public health initiative being run by specialists at the School of Pharmacy, De Montfort University (DMU). The idea for A Germ’s Journey came about when microbiologist, Dr. Katie Laird was trying to teach her young son about germs and handwashing and realised that there were very few educational resources available for teaching young children about this topic.

Katie then discussed this idea with Education Innovation professor, Sarah Younie. The two worked together alongside a multidisciplinary team of experts from specialities including microbiology, education, art, design and technology to develop unique interactive learning resources for young children. Medina Publishing, our parent company, worked with DMU specialists and took on publishing the title.

Helping the Isle of Wight Community

At Medina, we know that washing our hands is one of the most important things we all can do to help combat the spread of the Coronavirus, but sometimes it can be hard to get the message across to young children. This book helps them to understand it in a simple and fun way.

As an Island-based business, we wanted to help our community. Giving copies of A Germ’s Journey free to schools and nurseries that are still open and supporting the children of key workers, is a great way to do this.

We put a post out on Facebook on about the free offer and within 24 hours were overwhelmed by the interest from local organisations. We have 100 copies in our shop to give away, the first 70 of which have been posted out across the Isle of Wight. We are grateful to De Montfort University for covering the cost of postage.

Working with Katie and Sarah at De Montfort, we planned to expand the offer across the country but our warehouse in London has had to close. We are now working with DMU to produce an updated electronic version which will specifically cover Covid-19.

International Outreach Project

After the publication of A Germ’s Journey, DMU carried out an outreach project and, working with them, Medina published and distributed culturally relevant editions for The State of Gujarat in India as well as a special edition for Sierra Leone. The Gujarati language edition has been part of a DMU study in India and researchers report a dramatic improvement in the handwashing habits of the children in the area who had access to the book resulting in reduced illness in those children.

Online Resources for A Germ’s Journey

As well as the book, the team at De Montfort have developed a website which has many useful resources and downloads aimed at children of all ages that can be accessed for free by teachers and parents You can also follow them on Facebook here.

We are urging any schools, preschools or nurseries that have not already been in touch to contact us so we can post out a copy.