Our book-creation events – or Book Dashes – are the heart of what we do. At each one, we gather fifty creative professionals who work, as volunteers, for twelve hours to create new children’s storybooks. Everything they create is a gift to the world. Read our Book Dash Manual, to host your own event.

We also work with early-childhood and literacy organisations to give away free books, which have been printed with funding from donors and sponsors. At giveaway events, we get to meet some of the children who’ll be reading our books.

And our volunteers, sponsors, partners, and the children we make books for often give us occasion to to celebrate together.

Book Dash Cape Town, 2 December 2017

Cape Town, here we go again!

On a single Book Dash day, creative teams work fast to make beautiful African children’s books that anyone can freely access, print and distribute. Our next event will take place at the AKRO Co-Working Space in Cape Town on the 2nd of December.

You’ll need to do a little prepwork before the event, but most importantly, you need to be available from 9am to 9pm on Saturday the 2nd December. You will also need to get yourself to and from the venue in Salt River, Cape Town on the day. Our aim with Book Dash events is to attract great creatives from the surrounding area. However, applicants from further afar are welcome to apply as long as you are able to arrange your own transport and accommodation.

If you’re not a writer, illustrator, designer or editor, but are still passionate about children’s literacy, why not apply to help out in a support role? We need photographers, videographers, tech support, art directors and social media storytellers to make Book Dash a success.

To find out more about us, or to read existing books, visit For enquiries, email


Applications close on Sunday, 29th October 2017 at 12h00 midday. No late applications will be accepted. All applicants, successful or not, will be informed by Monday, 6 November.


Collaborative Print Run, June 2017

We’ve just completed the first of what we hope will be many Book Dash Collaborative Print Runs.
In line with our vision that every child should own a hundred books by the age of five, we spend a lot of time thinking about how we can reach more children. All Book Dash titles are available online as PDF ebooks so that anyone can freely read and download them. This digital reach was expanded last year with the addition of the free Book Dash Android app. But how do we share the special experience of holding, smelling and paging through a real book? We print and distribute physical copies! To date, we have printed 150 000 copies of Book Dash books for children, but we want to do more…

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Book Dash Cape Town: 19 November 2016

On the 19th of November, Book Dash alumni from across South Africa came to Cape Town. Their mission? Work together to create more, beautiful African storybooks in just 12 hours.

Thanks to Woolworths for sponsoring this one of a kind event, and for Workshop 17 at the Watershed for hosting us.

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Book Dash Jozi: 25 February 2017

This event took place at the Goethe-Institut Johannesburg on Saturday, the 25th of February 2017. It was sponsored by the wonderful people at Worldreader.

The Goethe Institut generously made it possible for six writers and six illustrators from different African countries to participate in this special event.

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Book Dash Grahamstown: 12 November 2016

Eastern Cape, you asked and we’re answered: with Book Dash Grahamstown on Saturday the 12th November!

A huge thank you to the National English Literary Museum in Grahamstown for hosting us, and The Solon Foundation for making yet another Book Dash possible!

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Book Dash Cape Town, 5 March 2016

On Saturday 5 March, teams of professional writers, illustrators and designers gathered at Cape Town’s Centre for the Book to create beautiful children’s books in just twelve hours.

The books they created together are their gift to the world, and can be freely printed and distributed by anyone. Read this account of the day by volunteer Helen Moffett, listen below to the documentary of the day produced by Nancy Richards or view the gorgeous photos from the day, taken by the talented Marilet of The Lion and the Lady photography.

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Book Dash Durban, 7 November 2015

Book Dash teamed up with the wonderful Solon Foundation to bring Book Dash to Durban! On Saturday 7 November, teams of professional writers, illustrators and designers joined us to create beautiful children’s books at St Mary’s DSG in Kloof.

The books they created are their gift to the world, and can be freely printed and distributed by anyone. They’re widely used by literacy organisations, ECD centres, schools and others around South Africa and beyond.

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New storybooks for thousands of children

Graca in the library

Press release, Cape Town, 14 May 2015

On 27 May, children’s centres across the Helderberg, Grabouw and the Cape’s Winelands will begin receiving free children’s books. The give-away project, funded by home-fittings company Decorland, is a partnership of Book Dash, Masikhule, and several organisations working with underprivileged children. It will provide 5000 books in Xhosa, Afrikaans and English, developed by some of Cape Town’s leading creatives, to Early Childhood Development centres and primary schools. Read more

Book Dash Jozi, 27 June 2015

Book Dash JoziWe teamed up with the lovely folk at African Storybook to bring Book Dash to Jozi on 27 June 2015. Teams worked together to create new children’s books in just twelve hours.

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Over forty professional writers, illustrators, and designers gathered, supported by a team of photographers, technical and art directors, storytellers, caterers, and logistics wizards. Everyone was a volunteer, and everything they created is their gift to the world.

Keep an eye on our Facebook page, and join our mailing list to hear about future events.

Huge thanks to the Goethe Institute for hosting us in their wonderful venue for our book-creation day.

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Book Dash at The Book Lounge, 11 December 2014

We’ve already raised R50 000 – yay! That means we can print and give away 2000 books to kids in need. But with your help we can do more!

The bigger the print-run, the cheaper each book is and the more we can print.

Please join us for the last push on the Thundafund campaign, which closes on 18 December.

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Book Dash at The Creamery, 13 November 2014

There’s no better combination for summer fun than books and ice-cream! We kicked off our 15 000 Books to Kids campaign with a launch event at The Creamery’s Salt River Cafe. Much fun was had by all, with funds of R4900.00 raised in total on the day.

Book Dash Cape Town, 30 August 2014

Our third Book Dash was Women’s Day themed, and organised in collaboration with Rock Girl and the African Storybook Project. Each team wrote a biography of an inspiring African woman.

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Mandela Day Handout, 18 July 2014

Book Dashers congregated at Jireh ECD Centre in Mitchell’s plain to hand out 750 Book Dash books to children. Each child got to take home three beautiful Book Dash books.

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Book Dash Cape Town, 28 June 2014

Our second Book Dash saw ten teams working for 12 hours at Cape Town Central Library. The space buzzed with creative energy as each team created a story from scratch.

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Book Dash Cape Town, 10 May 2014

This was our very first Book Dash. Just two teams working for six hours at the Paperight/Electric Book Works offices. We learned a lot about how future Book Dashes might work.

See what we made

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