Thursday, November 27, 2008

Books For Africa

"One penny donated to Books For Africa gives a child access to a book. Where else can you do so much with so little?”
-Tom Warth, Founder of Books For Africa

We are delighted today to introduce you to our new partners at Books For Africa! Since 1988, Books For Africa has shipped more than 20 million books to once-empty library shelves, to classrooms in rural schools, and into the hands of children across the African continent.

With Barefoot's focus on spreading literacy, art and cultural understanding to the children of our world, we wanted to do what we could to supplement the amazing work of Books For Africa. To launch our partnership, we've donated a carton of our books that are now en route to Liberia. What's better, we've developed an easy but effective way for you to help too! For our friends in the United States, we've created a collection of books that you can donate to Books For Africa for just a few dollars per book. By adding any of the books on this page to your order, you are covering the cost of shipping a beautiful, culturally-relevant book straight to Africa and into the hands of a child who may have never held a book before.

While we cannot offer the same capability to our friends in the United Kingdom and Europe, we encourage those of you across the pond to make monetary donations, no matter how small, to Books For Africa to help offset the hefty cost of shipping their parcels of books to the African continent. Wherever you're located, we hope you'll join us in supporting this wonderful cause!

We'll be posting more on this amazing organization and details about our partnership in the coming months. For now, here are some beautiful photos provided by Books For Africa, along with quotes from their supporters and people who have benefited from their work. For more background, be sure to check out this inspiring video about the mission of Books For Africa.

“Books For Africa is a simple idea, but its impact is transformative. For us, I have said before, literacy is quite simply the bridge from misery to hope. Literacy provides the keys to learning and empowers the individuals to expand their choices and opportunities for the future. In doing so, it is a crucial bulwark against poverty and a necessary foundation for sustainable development. For everyone everywhere, literacy is, along with education in general, a basic human right. Over the last two decades, Books For Africa has made tremendous progress helping to extend this right in Africa.”
-Kofi Annan, former U.N. Secretary-General

“I think that Books For Africa is about giving opportunity to children in Africa. An opportunity to read a book. An opportunity to improve themselves. An opportunity to become literate. And an opportunity to help their societies prevent problems (such as hunger, unemployment, disease) before they occur through education and economic development. Books are the doorway to imagination for a child and I’m happy that we are able to provide so many millions of doorways every year to so many children in so many African countries!”
-Patrick Plonski, Executive Director of Books for Africa

“I cannot express in words our gratitude for the books you sent to us and the difference they have made for our students and community. I walk into the library now and see the number of students reading your books. I thank God for you. You have made friends in Africa for life.”
-Dr. Morgan Chawawa, Director of Academic Studies at BA ISAGO University College in Botswana

“We are very pleased for the special gifts that you gave to our school. It is with great pleasure to hand this letter of thanks to you. Each and everyone at my school is willing to work very hard to read and learn from library books.”
-Motseoa Monyatsuoa, Lesotho

“I would like to thank you so much for the great gift you sent us. Believe me, with all the books you offered us, I can now carry on my research and this is all thanks to your generosity. God bless you.”
-Teguia Cherif, Algeria

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