Last week was International Book Giving Day and on our blog we wrote about friends who live in a rural village in Lesotho. They have a dream of building a library for the school and village. You can read about the differences between life in a Lesotho and ours…
When we visited Lesotho last October our intention was to provide them with some school supplies for the village school only to discover we were providing all the supplies for their village school… they really had nothing. Thanks to our wonderful readers around the world we were able to stock them up with school supplies.
Another thing that we didn’t anticipate was a world without books. No books in their homes. None in the school. None in the village. No local book store. And certainly no local library. A world without reading, a world with no trips down the adventurous road of books and no heady freedom to explore a topic that has peeked your curiosity. The reading material for the entire school, if not the village, consisted of about three posters on the classroom walls…
Last week I wrote about how excited the children were to receive a bundle of books we took them from BiblionefSA. These are not privileged children, in fact most of them are orphans. Their parents have fallen victim to the Aids pandemic and for many of the children who are not orphans, their parents work far away in cities in South Africa. There is a very low adult to child ratio. It is not unusual for a ten or twelve year old to be head of the household, with a couple of younger siblings to care for. In a country where basic resources like food and warm clothes, for the icy cold winters, are more than scarce you would expect them to be crying out for help. But no, one evening when were chatting with the adults, they mentioned their dream of building a library for their village school, because it could provide their children with opportunities and a future like nothing else could.
Anyway we are so excited about the response from our readers, who have offered to send books to Lesotho. We have about forty folk around the world who have pledged to send books to Lesotho. And I will be emailing each of them the postage/shipping details as soon as I have them.
However, I met up with a small glitch. Some of you had the great suggestion that you use a local on-line bookstore to shop and send books to Lesotho… Well believe it or not the first world met the third world head on!!! And there is only one large online store that ships directly to Lesotho, but the shipping isn’t free and the advantage of shopping locally will be lost to you all… So I have been making a plan for the books to be shipped to a South African address near to the border and then we will get friends to drive them into Lesotho. So there are two options for sending books:
- Postage directly to Lesotho: – Surface mail is fine, the cheapest option is really okay – it will just take a little longer to get there.
- Online Shopping to an address in South Africa: You can use Amazon which is familiar; The Book Depository, which has free shipping to South Africa or a local online Bookstore like Kalahari.com. There are buttons to all these book stores on the left of our blog and we are affiliates with them. That means that we will receive a small percentage of any sales, if the payment adds up to the price of a book we will just add another book to the library.
So there is a plan and I will be emailing every single one of you who have pledged to send books to us, with the relevant addresses just as soon as we have them. And I want to say a huge thank-you to all of you who have pledged books – you will literally be changing lives!!!
You can read all about International Book Giving Day and all the other projects involved on their website today…