Books go Walkabout – e-Print Publisher

Using SmithMartin technology for conversations - but now for eBooks and print services too!
Using SmithMartin technology forconversations- but now for eBooks and print services too!

Books Go Walkabout, our international literacy project,  has just started on a new journey, into e-publishing.

An exciting new adventure and we are pleased to start our journey with a book in our series called Writing about Africa. Short stories and general fiction about Africa – travel, images and character, with lots more to come.

The BgW team would be happy to talk with authors and creative writers about our literacy project. Helping us find new ways of presenting positive stories about the great continent, offering new markets and new readers for your work. You can contact us here.

The first story, The Goat That Vanished   is by Ifeoma Onyefulu. A story of a goat, some elders and a wedding gift that went wrong… a story of culture, humour and family life.


Where did the goat go?
Where did the goat go?

Ifeoma writes for children and uses her captivating photos of African life as she travels across the continent. Buy this short story from the Amazon Kindle Store – for less than the price of a cup of coffee here.

Our publications are set to grow, working with the Worldreader programme, whose charitable work distributes 300 stories per Kindle, free to readers throughout Africa. A great project!

Our eBooks and print publications are designed to feed into social projects supporting children and literacy in Africa, but their interest is world wide. Already Ifeoma’s story is available across the globe, in 9 different countries.

A real success for Books Go Walkabout…join us on the journey.


Books Go Walkabout – Children and authors using technology across the globe – an imprint of SmithMartin LLP

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Parent’s Participation Research at Daycare Trust

Parents’ Forum at Granard Children’s Centre in Wandsworth


Daycare Trust has been exploring the range of volunteering opportunities and parent participation initiatives being managed by local authorities and Children’s Centres in England.

The Parents’ Forum at Granard Children’s Centre, which is part of Granard Primary School, is an excellent example of supporting parents in the community. Parents have a voice and place to share thoughts, ideas and skills in a positive and encouraging atmosphere.

Governance and organisation are key to the structure and delivery of a community based programme of activities. At Granard, involvement through the Parents’ Forum is the mechanism which enables a range of activities and services. Not only do they meet the government agenda but are also relevant to the needs of parents.

In the Daycare Trust report it states, ” Parents have described the Parents’ Forum as good for self esteem, socialising and developing new ideas. It also provides a reason for leaving home on Monday mornings and lifts depression.”

SmithMartin Partnership LLP is proud to be a member of Daycare Trust.

Sue Martin

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A Better Beginning:
Easing the Cost of Childcare

eveAn interesting report from The Social Market Foundation explores a new way to support the affordability of formal childcare for working parents.

It is based on a similar approach to the student loans model and aims to spread the load of childcare costs over a longer period of time.

The advantages for parents would be that the significant costs of childcare would be lessened immediately, and may well enable parents to continue in working arrangements without the worry of escalating childcare costs.

For the government there would be no cost and it would bolster incentives to work, helping to make work pay, as well as the drive to ensure the access to high quality early years care and education.

This would seem to be a solution to families who are in long term employment and have a foreseeable future in their careers. It could be a positive step in ensuring that childcare costs can be calculated into their budgets over time.

It will be interesting to see if it is an option for part time and casual employment, or is an incentive to start looking for work in an environment where being unable to pay in the short term is the main driver to making the decision to return to work or not.

Image 2Download a pdf copy of the document here.

The Social Market Foundation, a think tank developing innovative ideas on social and economic policy.

Sue Martin

Forest Schools at Children’s Centres

forest school Bkmark

We’re going on a dinosaur hunt!

We are working with a children’s centre in the London Borough of Wandsworth and developing the Forest school project.

To really fire some imaginations and persuade people to come out of their flats, get some fresh air and exercise, we planned a dinosaur hunt. It was a great success.

From the 6 weeks before we had never had more that 2 or 3 keen young foresters.

But with the lure of a free dinosaur and the Big Bookmarks spreading the word we found that we had over 20 parents and 26 children.



Walking up from the Centre, across the estate, over the main road and into the heath the line just became bigger and bigger. Fantastic!



t rex


We searched for dinosaurs, we found them in all sorts of places, we even met with the ranger and his horse. What a morning.

And best of all was the delight of the children as they ran down the pathways, explored under the bushes and came to terms with the wellie boots on their feet!

What benefits could you find around the corner of your Centre? Ask us to design a Big Bookmark for your special event.

Sue Martin

SmithMartin Partnership – Broadening horizons and inspiring neighbourhoods in the community

Sue is on Everest

Sue is on Mount Everest – walking uphill a lot and raising money for charity. You can see regular updates on her personal blog

If you would like to sponsor Sue and donate money to ASBAH and Sue’s parish then please visit the Sponsor our Adventure page and leave your details.

Sue has included a narrative about her journey below.


Sue wrote…

A chance of a lifetime, an opportunity not to be missed.
A real adventure, we will be walking for 13 days and getting to altitudes of over 15,000ft.Leaving on Sunday Oct 10th and returning Thursday 28th October.
Lots of preparation and training and I am hoping, to make it to base camp, altitude sickness permitting, but however far I walk it will be an exciting trip.
I am raising money for ASBAH, Association for Spina Bifida and Hydrocephalus, St Nicholas Church, Gayton and would be really pleased if you are willing to sponsor me.

Information about the adventure.

Day 1 Arrive Kathmandu
Day 2 Sightseeing in Kathmandu
Day 3 Fly to Lukla (2,800m) and trek to Phakding
Day 4 Phakding to Namche Bazaar
Day 5 Acclimatisation day
Day 6 Namche Bazaar to Kyanjuma
Day 7 Kyanjuma to Thyangboche
Day 8 Thyangboche to Dingboche
Day 9 Acclimatisation day
Day 10 Dingboche to Lobuje
Day 11 Lobuje to Gorak Shep (5,288m) and visit Everest Base Camp
Day 12 Gorak Shep to Kala Pattar (5,545m)
Day 13 To Thyangboche
Day 14 To Lukla via Namche Bazaar
Day 16 Kathmandu
Day 17 Kathmandu
Day 18 Return to UK

I am really looking forward to being in the mountains and seeing Everest. Will love meeting the people and seeing the flowers and scenery as we walk.
On the way we will stay in local teahouses, which have basic communal accommodation and a chance to have a meal and a shower (I hope!!)
Namche Bazaar is an impressive village on the edge of a sheer hillside,from there onwards we will be out of contact. Quite a challenge for me as I rely on my mobile and internet links to speak to friends and family.
Everest base camp, altitude 5,288m, is on the edge of the Khumbu Glacier which we can walk across to stand at the base of the ice fall reaching up to Mt. Everest.

I am raising money for and ASBAH, Association for Spina Bifida and hydrocephalus, St Nicholas Church, Gayton and would be really pleased if you are willing to sponsor me.

To find out more as I travel you can visit my blog  below which I will update when I can…


Wish me luck and I hope together we can raise some funds for ASBAH and St Nicholas Church.

Sue Martin