Tuesday, October 25, 2011

What to do with old children's books?

I have been researching these programs where people get together and send books to developing countries to improve literacy. It is often American programs sending books to Africa. The benefits are said to be two fold: saving books from landfill which is good for the environment and helping kids learn to read. 

I think it is really important that we try to reuse things and keep items which can be used by others out of landfill. On this premise i am totally in-support of these programs, in regards to improving literacy i have some questions. 

I am still undecided. Don't kids want to read in their own languages? If we send books to countries in English and all kids learn is English, isn't this a mild form of globalisation? Maybe globalisation isn't the right word, maybe it is colonialism or maybe there isn't a word for it. I am curious to know what other people think about encouraging everyone to speak English. Would it be better to save the shipping money and source children's books in other languages?

My family and i cleaned out our storage on the weekend and we have a box of 200 children's books sitting here. I want to do something with them to avoid adding to the landfill problem and if there are children out there who will benefit from them I will send them. So the thing i am most curious about is do Nepali children really want to read books in English? And 2nd is it of any benefit to them to have English books filling up their school libraries and homes?


  1. From what I know, they would defintely be used. The charity I am involved with always get positive feedback from Nepalese people when given English books. In most of the country 90%of classes are taught using Nepali language and books etc are Nepali too. English books would be welcomed because reading English is vital for their improvement and growth. And to break the cycle of poverty, the fact is many need to learn English to succeed in other countries. The problem I have is how to get these donations over there. If you find any ways that offer free or low shipping for charitable donations, please let me know as I would have many I'd like to donate.

  2. Donate to Room to Read , Nepal? Thankyouverymuch!

  3. It's not always a good thing that English is the dominant language, but I guess it is what it is. Promoting these kids to learn it is probably going to help them in the long run. The important thing is to make sure they become literate in Nepali too. I've also heard that Room to Read is a good organization to donate to...

  4. I checked out the Room to Read web page but they only take NEW books. These books are all in top condition but they have been read. They have an arrangement with Better World Books but as i am not in USA i can't even donate them to room to read through this arrangement. So i am still looking for schools or organisations which could use these books...

  5. I just came across your blog from the NepaliJiwan and American Nepali....my name is Amanda too :) I am from Houston Texas, I married a Nepali back in June and I will be moving to Nepal prob. next year. It is so nice to read your stories It definatly helps out a lot with what to expect.

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