An initiative launched by the Bath & North East Somerset Faith Foundation has seen hundreds of books being donated to local schools, thanks to a new educational project.

The organisation, which promotes collaboration and partnership-working between different faith groups, wants to ensure that every school in the district has access to text books and scripture from a range of religious traditions.

The foundation’s Director, Nathan Hartley, said: “In our ever-changing global world, it’s important that children and young people have a basic understanding of a range of religious traditions. In modern Britain it’s rare that we’ll go through life without meeting at least one other person from a different cultural background from ourselves.

“It’s because of this that we’ve been working with local schools over the last couple of months to ensure they have access to text books from a range of spiritual backgrounds.”

In May, the organisation launched its ‘Bhagavad Gita for Schools’ programme. The Bhagavad Gita is a key scripture in the Hindu tradition, with its contents believed to have been first orally spoken around 5,000 years ago in northern India. The book is a conversation between Krishna (God) and Arjuna (his disciple) about the nature of the soul, the link between humanity and divinity and provides a moral code for how people can live their lives.

“Inspired by the Christian charity ‘Bibles for Children’, which has distributed half-a-million Bibles to children in 2,300 schools since 1997,” added Nathan, “our aim is ensure that every school throughout the region has a copy of the Bhagavad Gita.”

The foundation has already distributed free books to schools in Midsomer Norton, Keynsham and Bath. Teachers and educational leaders can order free copies for students by emailing the Bath & North East Somerset Faith Foundation at [email protected]