Thursday, June 9, 2011

The Magic Book Bus

Hello, all!

Occasionally when I have nothing to write I dig around on the internet to find book related news. I found this article last night. A woman from Florida has a VW bus named Bess that she drives around, bringing free books to kids in need. Having done observation hours in Rochester city schools, I've seen the hardships that many students face when they are living in poverty. While there are many issues facing children from poor families--lack of health care, inadequate nutrition, poorly funded schools--this one appeals to me especially, not because I don't think the others are important, but because I know from experience that this is one area in a child's life that often gets overlooked.

It's imperative that children are fed and clothed, but books offer new experiences, new horizons, and a chance to improve literacy. A lack of an education is a major factor in the perpetuation of poverty, especially in urban families. While, sadly, we as individuals with no political power may not be able to do much about the discriminatory policies that provide inadequate funding to urban schools or about the institutional racism that permeates our society, we can help children to get a better education. This woman, although I'm not sure what her Ethan Allen couch has to do with any of this, has found a way to do so and I applaud her efforts.

If you're interested in finding out more (or even donating), you can visit the Bess the Book Bus website.


1 comment:

  1. You are so right, this is one of the most grossly overlooked aspect of a child's life. Perhaps intentionally, or otherwise, it is of the utmost importance to not only provide the basic necessities, but also with a solution to make their lives better and to end the vicious cycle of poverty that they continue to endure.
    Again, this is why I stress the utmost importance of the library. Libraries provide this free service. The only difficulty I am finding is that there is such an increase of homeless people that a lack of address prevents them from obtaining a library card. However, more and more shelters are getting cards for the institution, allowing for some way to break that cycle as well.
    I admire this woman for her efforts and I hope that these efforts to educate these children will provide a better future for them, and our country.