Yesterday, thanks to several friends, I was able to go to the National Press Building in DC and attend my first press conference. The conference was introducing a new website called We Give Books.
So what is this website about? We Give Books is an initiative that enables anyone with access to the internet to put hard copy books into the hands of children who don’t have them. How do you (who have internet access, obviously, otherwise you wouldn’t read this) give away books? All you have to do is read a book online. Preferably to your children or grandchildren or great-grandchildren. Or your dog. Or your parrot. Or your self! Who wouldn’t want to re-read “The Little Engine that Could” or other classic Penguin books? Give yourself a trip down memory land, make memories with your children, and give a book to someone who needs it.
We Give Books aims to give away 1 million books in their first year. So far they have almost 2000 books donated! If they keep this volume up, they could easily reach their goal and go beyond it. Butterfly and I have donated 9 books to the Books Across America campaign.
There are several different campaigns you can choose to give books to. So far, we’re sticking with America (because that’s what Butterfly wants to do) but if you’re interested in donating books to Asia or Haiti, then they have those campaigns as well.
Penguin Book’s motto is “Books Change Lives.” I know books were always a huge part of my life growing up. I try to read books to the kids for at least half an hour a day. I’m loving this site because this way we can read a book AND give a book away at the same time. So far we have read “Ladybug Girl” about 4 times. Haven’t read that one? Login and read it! It’s very cute and right up Butterfly’s alley. While you’re there, join my reading group and we can donate books together.
In addition to hearing about this fabulous website, I was able to meet a few authors! Dave Barry is hilarious as his column, and Amy Tan, is very sweet. Dr. Marvin Berkowitz told us about his fascinating study of teens on being charitable. He wanted to find out how you can raise a charitable child. There are several more points he made in his discussion, but the 3 main points that giving teens said their parents did are:
- Explained how I can help other people by my actions.
- Encouraged me to speak up in family discussions.
- Spoke to me about the volunteering and charity they do.
Now I am far from having teens (so, so far away…please don’t burst my bubble) but I like that these three things I can do with my kids even now. I hope that all 3 of my children grow up to be kind and empathetic adults. And we’re going to start with another reading of “Ladybug Girl.”
PS- I wrote this review as part of a campaign by Mom Central on behalf of We Give Books and received breakfast, a gift bag, a chance to be away from my kids and be an adult for the morning, and a gift certificate. All views about the campaign are 100% mine! Now go read!