Kids’ Own Publishing gives children a voice, facilitates community storytelling and places children directly in the world of books and literacy. We partner with communities to share diverse stories widely through an artist-led publishing process.
In 1983 Victoria Ryle began teaching in a multicultural primary school in North London. One of her students, a young boy whose parents were from Gujarat, India did not progress with his reading.
One day Victoria sat with him, a book between them, open at a picture of a white woman in a kitchen. Beneath her the one word, ‘Mummy’. Victoria pointed to the picture, reading the word, ‘Mummy’, encouraging the boy to join in. Eventually he turned to her and said, “That’s not my Mummy.”
Victoria and the child found pictures of people who looked more like his family, wrote names beneath them and created a book. The boy read this book out loud, confident, again and again.
Out of this was born Victoria’s conviction that children needed to create their own books. In the following years Victoria developed a community publishing model which unleashed children’s creativity, engaged children in reading, writing and storytelling, and supported children’s learning and self-belief. In the process she founded Kids’ Own Publishing Ireland with partner Simon Spain. In 2003, Victoria founded a sister organisation in Australia.
Since 2013, Kids’ Own Publishing Australia has grown a dedicated team and community of partners across Australia. We continue to be inspired by the communities we work with and to publish books which value and respect the many authors and illustrators who created them.