Saturday, June 25, 2011

Books for children in SIKKIM (India)

Perched on the slopes of the Himalaya in an ancient Buddhist kingdom, the Sikkim Himalayan Academy provides education, encourages personal development and creates a home for some of the poorest children in the region.

These children come from very poor families and are used to having very little. Their behaviour in class is good and they are motivated to learn and are hard working. They are very happy and friendly and usually polite and uncomplaining.

They wear school uniform and change after school although they have few clothes and flip flops are normally their only shoes even in the very cold weather.

They own very little, no toys or books, no TV, radio or music but singing and playing drums and other homemade instruments are popular. They use whatever they find in the surrounding environment to play with and make up games. They also help with chores like collecting firewood and wild fruit, vegetables and nuts.

The school was started by a Dutch woman and some local teachers. The nonprofit organization will be grateful for any monetary donations, which will be used to buy clothing, school supplies, food, etc. A list of other items needed, and information on how to make money transfers, is available on their website.

Sikkim Himalayan Academy
Bhuriakop Busty
P.O. Bhuriakop
West Sikkim 737121

Friday, June 24, 2011

From Harlem to Kenya

LitWorld is a nonprofit organization working to cultivate literacy leaders worldwide through transformational literacy experiences that build connection, understanding, resilience and strength. LitWorld joins together with teachers, parents, community members, and children to support the development of sustainable literacy practices across the world.

You can support them by buying books on their amazon wishlist.

Monday, June 20, 2011

Books in MYANMAR

A few years ago I was lucky enough to visit Myanmar, a beautiful country with lovely people. The International School I visited helped to produce books for local children through Yinthway, a Myanmar organization dedicated to bringing books to children.
Check them out and see how you can sponsor the print run of a book in the local language.

If you travel to Myanmar, be sure to take along pencils, sharpener, paper and books. Colorful picture books, especially nonfiction with little text, will be a welcome gift to many.

Also check out this website to see how you can help support literacy and learning in Myanmar:

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Coins for CAMBODIA

The Canadian Coins for Cambodia project is the vision of my friend and school principal (former teacher/librarian!) Anne Mackie and Chhourn and Srey Poev Im, three people who had a goal to see Cambodian children have a brighter future by providing education and improving living conditions.
They are in their fifth year of operation and have a number of goals for the village and school including improving access to education and living conditions for children in outlying villages.

Achievements of the past five years include sponsoring several of the poorest families enabling the children to attend school rather than work in the rice fields.


$10 pays for school supplies for 1 child for 1 year
$30 a month sponsors a student from an outlying village
$50 pays 1 teacher salary for 1 month
$200 pays for a new well
$500 buys a cow to assist with the rice crops

Thursday, June 16, 2011


The mission statement of Ethiopia reads is as follows:

To create a reading culture in Ethiopia by connecting children with books. By planting libraries for children, creating culturally appropriate reading materials and training educators to nurture a love of books, Ethiopia Reads brings hope and educational skills to this generation of Ethiopians.

Programs support reading, (mobile) libraries and publishing.
Check them out here:

and look at the endless opportunities to support reading in Ethiopia, from $2 to buy a new book for a child, to paying teachers' salaries - you CAN make a difference.

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Orphanage in Kenya

My colleague and Canadian author Eric Walters has been working very hard to build a place in Kenya for children to live and to learn. Check out his website: to see how your school can help.

Here some of the students are using my book, along with hundreds of other books in the brand new library Eric has built for them!