Today Books for Keeps is delivering 17,487 books to 4 schools. Am I the only person having trouble grasping that this is real? 17,487 books. 4 schools. 1,600 kids. Last week Books for Keeps was in a bit of a bind. We had absolutely no idea how we’d deliver the books and were running out of time. It’s my fault; I was so focused on raising enough books, I never thought about how we’d deliver them. Last year I just put the books in my car.As with every other near-crisis we’ve faced, the Books for Keeps Guardian Angel was on duty. Two Men and a Truck has agreed to deliver ALL of the books. This morning. At 8:30. What a relief and a blessing. The sort room will sit empty for two whole days, til Kay arrives with 2,500 more books from our BookMoochers and out-of-state donors. I’ll have to deliver those books myself, and I’m not complaining.If you have time, please tell Two Men and a Truck what a wonderful thing they’ve done for Athens kids and Books for Keeps. You can post a comment on their Facebook page, or leave a message on their Web site. Pictures coming soon….
The protective pad for my dining room table made a reappearance for the first time since Whatever It Takes provided a sort room for Books for Keeps. What a deja vu moment it was, standing in front of the table with a box of books at my feet.I felt a brief urge to sit and reflect on the days when Books for Keeps was run out of my home and I sorted books all hours of the day. Then I remembered I had work to do, and got down to business. Things are so crazy right now; some days I can’t spare 20 minutes for the drive to/from the sort room. My car can’t hold another box of books, so I’m sorting them at home and here they’ll stay til distribution day.There’s so much to tell you; I feel guilty that I can’t squeeze in time for more sharing. Books for Keeps supporters are amazing and I hope you feel the same as I do: the kids & the books come first. I’m keeping notes, though! Someday…
We’ve had a last-minute surge in local donations, and Kay just sent me an updated count from Greenville. Are you sitting down? We have 19,455 books.I’m stunned, excited, and humbled by the generosity of Books for Keeps donors. And like last year, faced with a dilemma: do I save the extra books for next year’s program, or look for a last-minute opportunity to distribute them?Kay will be bringing almost 2,000 books when she makes her trip to Athens on May 1st. 2,000 books! All shipped to her house in Greenville by generous book-lovers and “BookMoochers” around the world… just since February. Can you imagine how much time she spends opening the mail? Here in Athens, UGA students are rallying their classmates to bring books from home when they return from Easter weekend. I really have no idea how many more books we’ll get. I do know this: my to-do list is 3 full pages long and everything must be completed by May 1st in order for our distributions to run smoothly. Yes folks, things are just as frantic as they were last year. I’m happy to report that it’s a controlled chaos and we DO have a plan…. and 19,455 books. Somebody pinch me! Here at Books for Keeps, sleep is optional for the next few weeks. I’ll do my best to keep you posted.
Below is a press release issued by the Clarke County School District, inviting media to the May 10th Books for Keeps book distribution. If you have media contacts who might be interested, we could certainly use your help getting the word out!Friday, April 15, 2011Writer/Contact: Anisa Sullivan Jimenez 706/546-7721, ext. 18271, firstname.lastname@example.orgBooks for Keeps Contact:Melaney Smith, email@example.comClarke County School District to Receive Over 16,000 Books From Books for KeepsAthens, Ga. – Athens non-profit Books for Keeps is preparing to distribute over 16,000 books to students at Alps Road Elementary School, Fowler Drive Elementary School, Stroud Elementary School and Clarke Middle School in May. The program launched at Alps in 2009, and has now expanded to include several additional schools that will benefit from the local program.“Books for Keeps started as an effort to help one little girl who loved to read, but didn’t own a single book. It quickly grew into a grassroots movement to end summer slide in Athens,” said Books for Keeps founder Melaney Smith.Smith utilized a University of Tennessee study when designing the 2011 Books for Keeps program. The study found that giving economically-disadvantaged elementary school children 12 books at the beginning of summer had an impact on reading achievement comparable to attending summer school.Books for Keeps will distribute 12 books per child to all elementary school students at Alps, Fowler Drive and Stroud Elementary Schools this May – a total of around 12,000 books. Media are invited to attend the May 10 book distribution event at Fowler Drive Elementary School. In addition, nearly 3,000 Clarke Middle School students will receive books. Also, Clarke Central High School already gave away nearly 1,000 Books for Keeps books to students in [...]
I stopped by ShirtWorks to see how the printing of our tote bags is progressing. They look FABULOUS! The kids will be carrying their books home in style, don’t you think?We are so grateful to the Kenneth T. and Mildred S. Gammons Foundation for the grant that made these bags possible. The books will be transported safely home, and owning this bag will remind the kids to read, read, read.
Books for Keeps ALWAYS need points. We’re on BookMooch as “booksforkeeps”. We get some of our best books from BookMooch. If you have points to spare, please send some our way.Don’t know how? Ask Melaney.