News and Media

What does a book drive look like?

Good with words: literacy connects students and creates advocates for change.

GUELPH — October 2016
The video above that shows you the before” and after” our first shipment of 10,000 lbs. of books in 2012. Meet students in Ontario and educators in St. Lucia describe the experience of giving and receiving in their own words.

People in more developed countries may tell you books are a thing of the past –they talk about the Kindle, the computer and the Internet – but in Soufrière we rely tremendously on books.

Joan Hippolyte
Principal, Soufrière Comprehensive School, St. Lucia

Students from across Ontario have poured their energy into retrieving 325,000 gently used books from home. These have been redistributed in St. Lucia, Grenada, Montserrat and Nevis where school libraries have been neglected for years. The book drive program creates a meaningful context for literacy– and inspires new advocates every day.

A good book is the best of friends, the same today and forever.

Author (1810-1889)

If you get the right [words] in the right order, you might nudge the world a little.

Sir Tom Stoppard
Out of this world
After reading "Postcards from Outer Space' a student in Montserrat is inspired to be the next Chris Hadfield.

Too many people grow up. That's the trouble with the world.


Life is too deep for words so don't try to describe it, just live it.

C. S. Lewis
Author, The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe
And the Winner in Montserrat is....
Marlaina White (Left) announces the Second Annual Rainforest of Reading Award to Illustrator Jan Dolby (Middle) and Author Joyce Grant for "Gabby."

At the moment that we persuade a child, any child to cross...that magic threshold into a library, we change their lives forever.


All I know is what I have words for.

Ludwig Wittgenstein

Act as if what you do makes a difference. It does.

Philosopher, Psychologist (1842-1910)
Find 52: The Road to Reading in Grenada
In February 2015, Richard ran right around Grenada, a distance of 52 miles. 52 "Mile Captains" raised $40,000.

If we want to make this world a better place, then we have to become better ourselves. There is no easy route.


If you believe what you can, quite literally, believe anything.

Professor, Philosopher (1912-1991)

Start some kind words on its travels. There is no telling where the good it may do will stop.

Sir Wilfred Grenfell
Humanitarian, Medical Missionary (1865-1940)
Challenging literacy development
Although English is the official language of St. Lucia, Krewyol is spoken as much or more outside the classroom.

I read. I travel. I become.

St. Lucian author & 1992 Nobel Laureate
It's a long story
Books packed by kids in Ontario for their peers in the Caribbean travel 1,800 kilometres by road then another 5,275 kilometres by container ship.

Literacy is, finally, the road to human progress and the means through which every man, woman and child can realize his or her full potential.

Secretary-General of the United Nations (1997-2006)

It is by acts and not ideals that people live.

Author (1844-1924)

Reading brings us unknown friends.

Novelist (1799-1850)

The future is always beginning now. Each moment is a place you've never been.

Poet (1934-2014)