Children in Africa, a phrase that often stirs the guilt strings of the heart and often accompanied by photos of sad, hungry faces. Books, a word denoting the common, yet powerful tool that enables limitless hours of learning and entertainment. Combine the tool and you have a great nonprofit in the form of Worldreader.
Naturally, Worldreader’s heartwarming mission is worth writing and reading about – since our first story about the nonprofit in 2012, the group has manged to distribute over 10,000 kindles to 3,000 word-hungry kids and are on their way to sharing nearly half a million ebooks to those eager, young readers.
Worldreader is a project of ex-Amazon exec and its mission to spread literacy was inspired by his incredible story about a locked library:
Former Amazon.com executive David Risher has loved books for as long as he can remember. They were his only way to explore the world as a child, they were what he studied in college, and they were what attracted him to Amazon in the first place. So when he volunteered at an orphanage in Ecuador and saw a padlocked building with books piled up above the windows, he had to ask what was going on. “That’s our library,” replied the orphanage’s leader. “But I think I’ve lost the key.” The girls had lost interest in the library’s books, and new books would take months to arrive– if they ever arrived at all.
With Kindles and wireless technology, Risher’s dream of spreading the joy of reading throughout the world can be easily achieved. The nonprofit is able to share 5 local and international ebooks for every $25 donated. According to Mashable, Worldreader’s mobile reading app “has been downloaded onto 4 million feature phones, and there are more than half a million active users, who use the app at least 20 times each month.”