Tagged: worldreader

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Megabook Initiative donates 36 Kindles!

favicon I thought Karen-Alexandra Nogues was donating one Kindle when she completed the Donate Kindle form last week. It turns out that Ms. Nogues, founder and executive director of Megabook Initiative, intended on donating 36 Kindles!

Thank you very much for this wonderful and generous donation.

Megabook Initiative believes that today’s readers are tomorrow’s leaders. The program distributes devices to children in places where access to books is limited, including Ivory Coast and Togo. Ms. Nogues understands the importance of reading and found the Kindle Classroom Project through its partnership with Worldreader.

Here’s an interview with Ms. Nogues about Megabook Initiative. It’s a few years old, when Ms. Nogues was a senior in high school. Now she attends Harvard University and will graduate next year.

I’m impressed with Ms. Nogues, her commitment to young people, and her ability to explain clearly the importance of reading. We believe in many of the same things!

I look forward to getting these 36 Kindles ready for students in Oakland and San Francisco. Maybe they’ll go to ninth grade teacher Shannon, who maintains a robust physical classroom library and is ready for a Kindle pilot. favicon

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Worldreader donates 458 Kindle Keyboards! This is the largest donation in KCP history.

favicon I am very happy to announce that Worldreader, a powerhouse nonprofit that spreads literacy in developing countries in order to create a world where everyone is a reader, has donated 458 Kindle Keyboards to the Kindle Classroom Project.

That’s not a typo: 458 is the correct number.

Thank you, Worldreader!

Um, that’s a lot of Kindles. In fact, this donation is the biggest in KCP history, more than double the 2015 gift of 210 Kindles from an anonymous supporter.

Here’s just one box of the massive donation (there are about 100 Kindles here):

And here are the rest of the 458 Kindles, plus hordes of cases and sleeves and chargers, in the back of my Honda Fit.

I’m blown away by the enormity of this donation and by the generosity of Worldreader. It is a transformative gift for the Kindle Classroom Project.

  • It increases the number of Kindles in the KCP by 50 percent (from 918 to 1,376),
  • It means that an entire new school can join the KCP,
  • It pushes my thinking about the next steps of the KCP.

Even more impressive than the massive gift was the kindness of the Worldreader staff throughout the donation process. One day last month on LinkedIn I received a message from Zev Lowe, senior director at Worldreader. Could the KCP use some Kindles? he asked. And would you like to come by to speak to the team? Sure!

It was wonderful to meet the Worldreader staff, get a tour of its San Francisco operations (thank you, Ryan Lew), meet founder David Risher, and answer questions about the KCP. (We opted for an informal Q and A session, rather than a formal presentation, though I did come with some slides — see below!) Everyone was kind, smart, and like-minded. Their commitment to promoting reading among young people in the developing world is unparalleled, and they were impressed with the KCP community of students, teachers and supporters.

Since my visit, I’ve spent a lot of time charging Kindles, getting ready for the Winter Kindle Party (it’s on Jan. 22, want to come? please sign up here!), and staying in touch with Worldreader. Everyone continues to be kind and helpful. For example, content director Danielle Zacarias volunteered her time to share her deep knowledge about publishers and digital book distribution, which was invaluable. Thank you!

I’ll keep you posted on what happens with this colossal donation — how I prep them for students, which teachers and students get them, and what it all means for the KCP. If you have questions, please leave them in the comments. Thank you again, Worldreader! favicon

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Worldreader: The Kindle Classroom Project’s competition

favicon The past month has been slow at the Kindle Classroom Project. Kindles are still coming in, but the pace has been a bit slower than usual.

The other day, I was wondering why, and then I saw this on PBS NewsHour:

Hey, no fair! Why isn’t reporter Jeffrey Brown calling me up to ask for an interview?

I’m kidding, Mr. Brown. You chose an impressive organization to spotlight. Yes, Worldreader is about as old as the Kindle Classroom Project, and I give co-founder David Risher credit. In the time I’ve collected and distributed 87 Kindles, he’s up to more than 12,000.

Sure, Mr. Risher used to be a vice president at Amazon, and he’s got funding through Amazon and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. Plus, his website is much fancier than iserotope.com.

With those resources, Worldreader has done an excellent job. The organization understands the importance of reading to fight illiteracy, and it partners well with villages in Sub-Suharan Africa to bring high-quality ebooks to kids. I particularly like Worldreader’s focus on filling up the e-readers with books by African authors.

Mr. Risher began his project in Ghana, close to my favorite West African country, Mali, which I was lucky to visit twice with buildOn, a non-profit organization that builds schools. The students I worked with in Donkelena and Kongolikoro would have loved (like, gone crazy) for a Kindle.

So, because Worldreader is doing important work, and an excellent job at it, I will no longer be secretly jealous of Mr. Risher and all of his success. 🙂 After all, there are plenty of used Kindles out there. If the Kindle Classroom Project gets 100 Kindles for every 1,000 that Worldreader gets, I’ll be happy with that. I will say this: If you’re currently donating to Worldreader, keep doing so, but every once in a while, please check out the KCP Contribute page! favicon