Books Change Lives: LitWorld Holiday Book Drive

Just one book can change a life. Imagine what a difference that one book would make if it were put in the hands of a little girl or boy who had never before held a picture book, let alone had one for their very own.

You can make that possible through LitWorld’s annual Holiday Book Drive (Dec 1 to Dec 31.

LitWorld is a non-profit organization that advocates for global literacy. LitWorld believes stories are life-changing and sharing stories will create connections that have the power to change the world.

LitWorld works closely with teachers all over Liberia, providing professional development around reading and writing. We also provide schools with much needed books, supplies and school materials. Currently the ratio of children to books is 75:1. Our dream is to change that to 1:1!

The International Book Bank is an organization that has been delivering free books and educational materials to developing countries since 1987, with the goal of increasing literacy and advancing education.

As you may know, thousands of people were killed in Liberia’s 16-year civil war, leaving the nation in economic ruin. Many places are still without electricity and running water. Unemployment and illiteracy continue to be endemic. The country is attempting to rebuild and recover from this long and arduous war. A large part of this effort is rebuilding the educational system. In order for that to be successful they need an increased supply of books and materials.

Though Sierra Leone is well known for its diamond industry, it was ranked as the poorest country in the world in 1998. The dispute over the control of the diamond mines erupted in an 11-year civil war, which began in 1991 and ended in 2002. Sierra Leone faces the intense challenges of reconstruction, with poverty and unemployment leading the major issues. The Civil War deconstructed 1,270 schools, leaving 67% of children in 2001 without an education. Today, two thirds of the adult population in Sierra Leone are illiterate.

The book drive is simple. Donate children’s picture books, sending or bringing them to one of three drop-off points in New York. LitWorld, in partnership with The International Book Bank, will fill a 20ft container with the books (around 3,000 are needed) and ship them to Liberia and Sierra Leone. There, the books will be put straight into the hands of children (see picture above of LitWorld Ambassador Kimmie Weeks reading aloud from book donations). Some of these children will never have seen a picture book before; the majority are used to sharing what they do have: one book is shared among 75 children, on average.



One Response to “Books Change Lives: LitWorld Holiday Book Drive”

  1. Laura

    You&#39;ve done justice to this important issue with your detailed post. Your kindness and benevolence are what Christmas is all about.<br /><br />I&#39;m wishing you a wonderful holiday season!