by Natasha Worswick, Book Aid International
Book Aid International is an international charity that believes books can change lives. Each year, we strive to send as many books as we possibly can to communities in sub-Saharan Africa. There the books are vital for education, improving literacy, providing information and underpinning development.
As you’ll see from this video — which shows libraries in Kenya and Nairobi — books bring all sort of practical support. From teaching children to improving livelihoods. From feeding imaginations to expanding horizons. From giving voice to simple stories to uniting feuding communities.
In 2012, with the incredible support of publishers and donors, we:
- sent 543,280 books to 200 partner organisations in 12 African countries,
- increased access to books for 21,000 school children in 45 schools in Zanzibar and the Kagera region of Tanzania via our School Library in a Box project,
- transformed 16 community libraries in rural Uganda, Zanzibar, and the Mathare slum in Nairobi, and
- extended our successful children’s book corner project from Kenya and Tanzania into Uganda.
In short, in various ways, books mean hope. Books really can change lives. Your support for International Book Giving Day will mean a tremendous amount to the communities that we work with.
If you are interested in supporting Book Aid International’s work, you can donate or volunteer. Book Aid International volunteers stamp and pack books, collect donated books from book publishers and raise money. Book Aid International accepts book donations solely from book publishers. If you are a publisher and are interested in donating books to Book Aid International, see Become a Book Donor.
Those of you in London are invited to celebrate International Book Giving Day by volunteering for Book Aid International! On February 26th, help stamp, sort and pack books at Book Aid International’s London office. With as many as 13,000 books to pack in one evening to send to partners in Africa, this volunteer opportunity will combine good, hard work with drinks, nibbles, socializing and learning more about Book Aid International. Since places will be limited, Book Aid International urges those of you interested in volunteering to contact Grace for further information: Grace[dot]Allingham[at]book-aid[dot]org