LONDON (AP) — Geoff Woolf gave his sons a love for literature. When he acquired sick with COVID-19, they turned to books to help him — and others.

The 73-year-old retired lawyer was hospitalized in London in March, and inside days he was on a ventilator in intensive care. Unable to go to, his family may solely watch from afar with frustration and dismay.

Then sons Nicky, a 33-year-old journalist, and Sam, a 28-year-old actor, had an thought: Maybe literature may help him and other patients.

“He always said if he was in hospital for a long time, he would be able to deal if he had a book,” Sam talked about.

The brothers loaded an e-reader with Jane Austen’s “Pride and Prejudice” — “his comfort read,” in accordance to Sam — and carried out it for his or her unconscious father.

Doctors talked about, ”‘We can’t let you recognize he’ll positively hear it. But we will additionally’t let you recognize he acquired’t,’” Sam talked about. “There is power in hearing a voice.

The brothers set out to acquire more devices for other patients. As they came to terms with the likelihood of losing their father, they saw the project, which they named Books for Dad, as a legacy.

Nicky and Sam recruited a team of volunteers to load e-readers, donated by audiobooks company Audible, with content, including classic novels, thrillers and podcasts. They delivered an initial batch of 20 — disinfected and individually bagged — to the hospital treating their father, along with single-use headphones donated by British Airways. Soon they were distributing dozens more to other hospitals around the U.K.

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Books for Dad is a boon to hospitals looking for ways to keep patients stimulated. Often patients are too sick to read a book, and some don’t have their own electronic devices. Even if they do, patchy WiFi can hamper audio and video streaming.

Lisa Anderton, head of patient experience at University College London Hospital, said the “brilliant” initiative can help every coronavirus and other patients.

Hospitalization is aggravating even in among the best of events, and the pliability to “pop your headphones on and just listen to something that takes you somewhere else, I think really changes how people feel and how people cope with what can be an alien as well as a very busy environment,” Anderton talked about.

From the preliminary donation, Books for Dad has saved rising, and the brothers plan to distribute 5,000 e-readers to British hospitals over the next six months and add books for kids and youthful adults to their content material materials.

As the endeavor expanded, Geoff Woolf had secondary infections, organ failure and a major stroke. Doctors began to deal with the chance of switching off life help.

Then, after just about 4 months of hospitalization along with 67 days on a ventilator, he began to improve. In late July he was discharged from Whittington Hospital, workers applauding as he was wheeled out of the ward en route to a specialised neurological hospital the place his restoration continues.

His sons know he has a protracted avenue ahead.

“But considering the place where he was, which was ‘Goodbye,’ it is remarkable that he has come back to a state where he is aware, he understands what’s going on,” Sam talked about. “Communication is very difficult. But he has comprehension, and with comprehension there’s the capacity for a life worth living.”

What the brothers as quickly as thought may very well be a endeavor honoring a life decrease fast has now change right into a legacy of their love for his or her father, they talked about.

“And how much his love of literature meant to us,” Nicky added, “and how meaningful it was to be able to pass that on to other people.”


While nonstop info regarding the outcomes of the coronavirus has turn into commonplace, so, too, have tales of kindness. “One Good Thing” is a set of AP tales specializing in glimmers of enjoyment and benevolence in a darkish time. Read the gathering proper right here: