Rapper Ludacris Leads Epic Book Drive to Success
(September 1, 2011) New York, N.Y. – Global bookstore Better World Books and teen not-for-profit DoSomething.org announce today the results of their “Epic Book Drive,” an initiative launched this spring to collect books to re-stock the New Orleans’ Recovery School Disctrict. The campaign, which launched in the spring and engaged over 100,000 young people nationwide to run community book drives, collected over 250,000 books. Better World Books provided free shipping to all groups organizing drives.
Actor and Grammy Award-winning recording artist Ludacris served as the campaign’s spokesperson, starring in a Public Service Announcement (PSA) and rallying his fans and social networks to get involved.
“I’m proud to be a part of the Epic Book Drive and to see that over 100,000 young people participated,” says Ludacris. “By collecting such a huge number of books for those in need, teens around the country showed they haven’t forgotten about New Orleans and the Recovery School District.”
Click to view his PSAs or, visit EpicBookDrive.com.
To view a video recap of the campaign, including footage from a book drop off event at New Orleans’ Harriet Tubman Charter School, visit here.
DoSomething.org and Better World Books chose to target their drive at improving New Orleans school libraries because the need for support is ongoing in the region. 80% of schools were damaged by Hurricane Katrina and many are still in the rebuilding process. The Recovery School District is designed to take under-performing schools and transform them into successful places for children to learn. The District currently serves over 30,000 students in 69 traditional public and public charter schools.
“Since the hurricane, we have been building school libraries for all of our students,” says Troy Peloquin, Volunteer Donation Coordinator for the Recovery School District. “I am amazed that six years later, people from around the country have taken time to raise not only books for our kids, but also a nationwide awareness of our city’s schools. The books raised will immediately serve to help educate the students in all of New Orleans’ Public Schools.”
Teens were encouraged to register their book drives online and start collecting in their schools and communities. Better World Books and DoSomething.org made sure students can send books free of charge to Better World Books’ headquarters, where they are currently being sorted for donation and re-sale. A portion of the proceeds from all book sales will be donated to the Recovery School District to purchase brand new books. Any books that are not suitable for donation or re-sale will be recycled. Better World Books has re-used or recycled over 53 million pounds of books to date.
Central Bucks East High School in Doylestown, Pennsylvania collected 16,000 books, the most of over 200 participating drives. The school was rewarded with a $1000 donation to its library and a party for its entire student body.
“DoSomething.org gives young people the opportunity to step up in a really big way,” says Betsy Fast, DoSomething.org Editor in Chief. “And they always deliver! Over 100,000 teens raised over 250,000 books? Now that’s an Epic Book Drive.”
Throughout the year, DoSomething.org runs social action campaigns for teens that tackle a variety of different issues. To get involved or for more information, visit DoSomething.org
About Better World Book
Better World Books (www.BetterWorldBooks.com) is a for-profit social enterprise that collects and sells books online with each sale generating funds for literacy initiatives in the U.S. and around the world. With more than eight million new and used titles in stock, Better World Books is a self-sustaining company that balances the social, economic and environmental values of its stakeholders. Better World Books diverts books from landfills by conducting book drives on 1,800 college campuses, through community outreach efforts, and by collecting discards from over 2,000 libraries. Since its founding in 2003, the Alpharetta, Georgia-based company has raised over $9.4 million for its non-profit literacy and library partners; donated over 4 million books; re-used or recycled over 50 million books, saving space in landfills; achieved over 19,000 tons of carbon offsets through carbon-neutral shipping, and created more than 200 full-time jobs with meaningful benefits.
DoSomething.org the largest organization in the U.S. that helps young people rock causes they care about. A driving force in creating a culture of volunteerism, DoSomething.org is on track to activate two million young people in 2011. By leveraging the web, television, mobile, and pop culture, DoSomething.org inspires and celebrates a generation of doers: teenagers who recognize the need to do something, believe in their ability to get it done, and then take action.