Do Good Works!Posted by Elizabeth on June 11, 2012
Like everyone else working at Goodreads, I love to read. My fondest memories from childhood are undeniably tied up in the marvelous world of books: the first time I went to the school library and saw books lining the walls like some glimmering treasure trove; touching those shiny Newbery badges; plowing through countless Betsy-Tacy books with their thick, funny-smelling paper; walking to the public library once a week in the summer to get my stickers as I whittled away at a reading challenge.
The problem is not everyone has access to books. Not everyone can read. Due to circumstance or need, the idea of not being able to read or having access to books is a tragedy.
At Goodreads we feel a personal responsibility to do what we can to further the act of reading and access to knowledge. The right book in the right hands can literally change a life. We think you, passionate readers, feel the same. Two years ago we realized that our newsletter was a great place to highlight organizations that could help fellow readers or would-be readers. And so Do Good with Goodreads was born.
Since 2010, Do Good with Goodreads has featured 28 organizations with program goals ranging from bringing books to children in poorer areas to innovative literacy and library projects in dozens of countries worldwide.
Up until now, we've never known whether we're making a difference, but recently, we received this inspiring email from Chris Bradshaw, founder and president of the African Library Project.
Hi Elizabeth and Jessica (and the rest of your team),
Last month you featured the African Library Project in your newsletter. I wanted to give you a little feedback (and a lot of love) on what's happened since.
We began getting phone calls and emails from Australia, Canada, the UK, and of course, the USA, from "Goodreaders" who were moved to want to organize a book drive to help create a library in Africa. A dozen of them have signed on to do book drives which means Goodreads can add inspiring the beginning of a dozen African libraries to their plethora of accomplishments! And the inquiries keep coming in.
Now, we aren't set up to work in Australia, Canada, or the UK. But many of the Canadians that want to help will simply drive their books across the border to mail them from a U.S. post office to our warehouse in New Orleans. In the case of Australia, one of your readers was so interested, she is researching the logistics of us being able to coordinate Aussie book drives and ship containers from Australia to Africa. This could be the start of something big. We haven't figured out the UK yet, but given time...
Hope you are feeling very proud of the contribution Goodreads is making to African literacy efforts about now because we are proud of you and grateful for your support!!
Sharing the love,
Since you guys are the ones who are truly making a difference, we want to pass along the love to you. Thank you for sharing your time with us and supporting readers, both in your own neighborhoods and around the globe!
Take a look at all the nonprofits we've profiled so far, and let us know what amazing charities you'd like to see included in the future.
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