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Inspiration: World Book Night 2014

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“Let us remember: One book, one pen, one child, and one teacher can change the world.” Malala Yousafzai

Inspiration: World Book Night 2014

Inspiration: World Book Night 2014. Staffers at My Sisters’ Place received 20 books on behalf of the population they serve.

Welcome to World Book Night US!  It is an honor to commemorate the following momentous events;  World Book Night, UNESCO’s International Day of the Book,  World Book Days, Shakespeare’s 450th Birthday, and Miguel de Cervantes’ memorial, by sharing free books.  This year, I am thrilled to be a Book Giver again and to share them with My Sisters’ Place (MSP) in White Plains, NY.  My Sisters’ Place is a terrific organization and a much needed local resource that “strives to engage each member of society in our work to end domestic violence, so that all relationships can embrace the principles of respect, equality, and peacefulness.” 

What is the origin of this event? What do all of the above share? April 23 is the key date that unites them all. In 1995, at UNESCO’s General Conference,  attendees discussed choosing a day to encourage people to read. They chose to honor April 23 as a way “to pay a world-wide tribute to books and authors on this date, encouraging everyone, and in particular young people {to read…}”  Fifteen years later, that special designation helped launch World Book Night in the UK (Britain and Ireland).

What is World Book Night? In case you’ve never heard of this special program, it was initiated by Book publishers at a Conference in the UK in 2010.  Publishers wanted to find another way to share the love of reading with new readers. Free books, donated by several local publishers, were distributed in the UK and quickly became a popular global event with thousands of volunteers connecting with appreciative book readers. To celebrate books and encourage more adults to read, the World Book Night organizers collaborated with book publishers around the world and arranged a massive book giveaway. 500,000 copies of 30 paperback books, selected by a special panel, were distributed to readers in organizations, clubs, on the streets and at designated locations.  The first World Book Night giveaway was celebrated in the UK and Ireland in 2011. By 2012, it had expanded to the USA and Germany. The practice continues today. (Update: Sadly, World Book Night USA won’t join in 2015 because of funding challenges).

Inspiration: World Book Night 2014. Staff at My Sister's Place received 20 books

Inspiration: World Book Night 2014.

As a volunteer book giver in 2013, I shared Tina Fey’s Bossy Pants with students at the YWCA Women’s Empowerment group. This year, I received 20 copies of a special paperback edition of  Terry McMillan‘s, New York Times bestselling book, Waiting to Exhale.  It was one of three books I had chosen from the 2014 book list when I applied. About a week before I delivered my books, the manager of  my local Barnes & Noble bookstore called to remind me to pick up my boxed books.  Just like in 2013, picking up the books was a breeze. A staffer welcomed me, brought out the books, and presented me with a lovely thank you letter and a certificate. All I had do was to eagerly wait till April 23rd to share the books and  join the global effort to ensure the maximum number of recipients were reached.

Inspiration: World Book Night 2014

Inspiration: World Book Night 2014. Staffers at My Sisters’ Place received 20 books

This year, I chose  My Sisters’ Place as the recipients of Terry’s book. I chose My Sisters’ Place not only for their superlative work to educate and end domestic violence, but also for their excellent service to the local community. On a personal level, I chose it because I know that books can provide a way out of misery, and a way in to healing during challenging times. When I called to set up the delivery, MSP staffers, Diana Eppolito, Development Coordinator, and Silvia Lederman, Volunteer Coordinator, were so kind to fit me into their very busy schedules. To memorialize the event, I took several photos of the books and of staff members at My Sister’s Place.  When I signed up to become a book giver, I identified the program as one of two choices to receive copies of the free book because all of us can find some comfort in the joy of reading  during tough times. In a world that continues to minimize the impact of domestic violence on households, MSP is an important voice of conscience by providing education and a wide range of other critical services to their growing clientele; primarily women and their children. In difficult times, reading uplifting or funny books, maintaining a sense of humor, and taking appropriate action can help us develop effective coping skills.

More below!

“If there’s a book you really want to read, but it hasn’t been written yet, then you must write it.” Toni Morrison

Inspiration: World Book Night 2014. Staff at My Sister's Place received 20 books

Inspiration: World Book Night 2014.

Again, why April 23?  In case you’ve forgotten,  this is an important question because when I visited the site to verify, I found the following impressive information:

April 23 is the UNESCO International Day of the Book, as well as Shakespeare’s birthday. It was also chosen in honor of Miguel de Cervantes, who died on April 23, 1616 (the same day as Shakespeare). In the Catalan region of Spain, the day is celebrated by giving a book and a flower to a loved one.

If nothing else, connecting our passion for the written word with a celebration of the lives and works of the writers mentioned above is a great gift. If each of us made the effort to share a book, give a book, volunteer to distribute books, or even read a book to a child, we would inspire a deep love for reading and help create a new generation of passionate readers. I hope the pictures  and information I shared conveyed that message.

If you wish to participate next year,  don’t forget to connect with the organizers on Facebook, Twitter or at the World Book Night US or World Book Night UK websites. Sign up to receive the newsletter and you’ll be notified of their next giveaway. If you’d like to support the work of My Sisters’ Place, please reach out to them via their  MSP website. Hope you enjoyed the event too. Thank you!

Positive Motivation Tip: We can all make a difference in the lives of others by sharing a book, giving away books to adult readers or by reading to a child. READ!

Mirthful Tip: 

PHOTO CREDITS/ATTRIBUTIONS: All from my personal collection.

Until Next Time…
Ask. Believe. Receive. ©
Elizabeth Obih-Frank
Mirth and Motivation
Positive Kismet

43 Comments leave one →
  1. 12/05/2014 7:08 pm

    I am abt 15 min from white plains.. i am sure if my wife off she would want to go and check it out.. she is an avid reader.

  2. 12/05/2014 7:35 pm

    I always like that Toni Morrison quote. Sounds like a great night. May you have future success.

  3. 12/05/2014 8:43 pm

    What a great program!

  4. 12/05/2014 10:03 pm

    This sounds like a wonderful initiative. I especially loved the quote at the top. WOW so true!

  5. 13/05/2014 1:56 am

    We always share books worth reading, especially with my close friends and family members

  6. 13/05/2014 5:54 am

    great idea! I’ll have to do this next year! and McMillan’s book is a pretty strong one to share.

  7. 13/05/2014 6:11 am

    This is really neat

  8. 13/05/2014 8:01 am

    What a great idea and great post! Too bad I missed it! I would love to post about something like this!

  9. 13/05/2014 8:09 am

    There are so many people who would probably have loved to be a part of this! What a great idea! Book sharing is such a special way to share literacy.

    • 13/05/2014 10:50 pm

      So true… My goal is to get many people involved. The more exposure communities in need get, the better for all of us.

  10. Angela S permalink
    13/05/2014 8:12 am

    I am so glad to learn about this event. I didn’t know about World Book Night initiative.

  11. 13/05/2014 11:11 am

    This is really great! 🙂

    • 13/05/2014 1:36 pm

      Hi Cecilia! Thank you for stopping by…. Haven’t forgotten all but have been sidelined by health matters. Will follow up soon. TY!

  12. Liz Mays permalink
    13/05/2014 4:35 pm

    I love that books cross all barriers and mean so much to so many. Wonderful program!

    • 13/05/2014 10:48 pm

      TY Liz! It is a fantastic initiative that touches the lives of light and seasoned readers around the world. I’m glad to be a giver again.

  13. Itzy permalink
    13/05/2014 5:55 pm

    This is fantastic- I love the way your group and theme fit together.

  14. 13/05/2014 7:02 pm

    Thanks for sharing this information about World Book Night! Books are so meaningful for all!

    • 13/05/2014 10:44 pm

      They are a terrific way to stretch the mind. I like that WBN organizers want to reach people who don’t read or read very little.

  15. smile789 permalink
    13/05/2014 7:59 pm

    What a great event. I hadn’t heard of it before.

  16. 13/05/2014 8:19 pm

    That is an awesome event. I have to get back to reading like I used to

  17. franckxethee permalink
    13/05/2014 8:22 pm

    Book Night is a great way to promote new and existing books to those who love to read.

  18. patranila (@patranila) permalink
    13/05/2014 8:49 pm

    Great program!

  19. Chasity Boatman permalink
    13/05/2014 8:52 pm

    I love reading! I would have love to go to this.

  20. Rebecca Swenor permalink
    13/05/2014 10:03 pm

    Congrats on the great work you do and please do continue. Interesting info .Thanks for info.

  21. The New Classy permalink
    14/05/2014 3:57 am

    I read one of Terry McMillian’s books. I think it was “How Stella Got Her Groove Back” and it was really good. That was great for you to share like that. 🙂

  22. Payal Bansal (@TrendsnHealth) permalink
    14/05/2014 8:47 am

    Wow! this is an amazing event. I am a book worm and would love to be part of such an event anyday !

  23. 14/05/2014 1:35 pm

    World Book Night sounds like an awesome event. Wow 500,000 books given away! That’s fantastic!

  24. 14/05/2014 9:43 pm

    I love books! The quote by Toni Morrison is a really great quote!

  25. Natalie permalink
    15/05/2014 2:13 pm

    I’m not much of a book reader, but I have a few book blogger friends that are, so I will have to show them this!

  26. 17/05/2014 11:43 pm

    I love that you posted about this. It’s great to hear that books are still being widely appreciated in the world, even though e-readers are becoming more popular.

  27. Mary Jane permalink
    18/05/2014 7:02 pm

    great one for those who loves book and to read. i used to be a bookworm but now i am just too busy with my daughter and family

  28. Lyosha Varezhkina permalink
    12/04/2019 7:02 pm

    book nights are so exciting! I love it when activities are held in unusual time. it adds up so much!

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