A free online children’s book explaining all about Coronavirus is being produced in Gaelic by Stornoway publisher Acair.

The book was initially released in English earlier this month (6 April) by the award-winning independent digital children’s publisher Nosy Crow, who partnered with Gruffalo illustrator Axel Scheffler and medical experts at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, to get the title available in record time.

The authors of the text were Nosy Crow staff members Elizabeth Jenner, Kate Wilson and Nia Roberts, taking advice from Professor Graham Medley, two head teachers and a child psychologist.

The book answers key questions in simple language appropriate for five to nine-year-olds, tackling common queries such as how the disease spreads, whether there’s a cure and how children can help during the pandemic.

Kate Wilson, managing director of Nosy Crow, said: “We were very aware that many parents and carers are struggling to explain the current extraordinary situation to children, many of whom are frightened and confused. We thought that the best thing we could do would be to use our skills to produce a free book to explain and, where possible, reassure children.

“We asked Axel, whose work is so familiar and so loved, to illustrate it. He was happy to do it and did it extraordinarily quickly. We hope it helps answer difficult questions in difficult times.”

Acair has previously translated Axel Scheffler and Julia Donaldson’s ‘An Gruffalo’ and stepped in to produce the Gaelic version of ‘Corona-bhìoras’ as soon as they were approached.

Acair manager Agnes Rennie said: “We have worked with Nosy Crow to produce many co-editions over recent years and were so pleased when they approached us to see if we wanted to create a Gaelic version of this new book.

“In the spirit of the original book, the Acair version is the product of a generous team approach and we are particularly grateful to Dolina Macleod, one of our regular freelance translators, who volunteered to create the Gaelic text which was then turned into the Gaelic book by Acair – all working from home.

“I never imagined that Acair would be involved in producing a book for children about the Coronavirus!"

You can find the free, downloadable Gaelic version of Corona-bhioras at Acair's Facebook page here www.facebook.com/acairbooks/ and via their Twitter feed.

The English version is here nosycrowcoronavirus.s3-eu-west-1.amazonaws.com/Coronavirus_ABookForChildren.pdf

It’s suggested that families who find the book helpful might make a donation to help our health service at www.nhscharitiestogether.co.uk/