Book Review: Grace and the Grumblies

The story behind the children's book

Ben Dunn, Supporter Experience Lead, Christians Against Poverty

In 2021 around 5000 dependent children lived in households helped by Christians Against Poverty’s Debt Help service.  Almost half of parents helped (48%) said their struggle with debt affected their children’s emotional wellbeing or mental health, 13% said it affected their performance at school, and 6% said it affected their physical health. 

My children didn’t know how bad my debt was, but they knew something was going on as I wasn’t myself. I’d wait for them to go to bed before I could break down.

Child poverty has been headline news in recent years and statistics like those above have flooded the media.  At Christians Against Poverty, we get to know the people behind the numbers — families that can’t afford the basics like electricity for light in their homes and food for the families. The families we work with are also often living under a cloud of stigma and shame, which delays seeking help and makes the problem worse. Two thirds (66%) felt too embarrassed to ask for help and three fifths (58%) felt ashamed in 2021. 

That same year Christians Against Poverty partnered with writer Emily Shore and illustrator, Katie Rewse to release the children’s book Grace and the Grumblies.  

The playful and imaginative book follows the story of Grace and her superhero mum, as they chase down escaping dragons, travel through dark caves and build their super-team to take on the dreaded Grumblies. 

Told in a gentle and hopeful way, it aims to start a conversation between children aged 4+ and their parents about the inequality experienced in the UK, to challenge some of the stigma around poverty and explain a little about CAP’s work through local churches to support some of those in need. 

Grace’s story is fictional, but UK poverty is painfully real. 

The great news is that, today, your family could make a real difference for another family in need. To order a copy of Grace and the Grumblies for a suggestion donation to Christians Against Poverty of £5+ visit https://capuk.org/appeals/grace-and-the-grumblies.

Since release, ‘Grace and The Grumblies’ has attracted some glowing reviews:

Article published September 30th 2022