sustainably smitten

A community of ideas to celebrate, nuture, and protect our planet for generations to come

Books for a Better World

This year my husband and I had books on our Christmas list as usual, but made sure to ask our family to pretty please buy used, and even better, buy from Better World Books. This online bookstore is filled to the brim with must reads, weekly deals, a bargain bin, and super friendly customer service. On top of it all, for every book you purchase, they donate a book to someone in need through one of their literacy partners. To date the company has donated over 7 million books, kept nearly 100,000 books out of landfills, and have raised over $13 million for literacy and libraries!

The company is focused on targeting literacy due to its social, economic and political implications. 

Estimated number of illiterate adults: Percent of those adults who are women:
781,000,000
– UNESCO Institute for Statistics
64%
– UNESCO Institute for Statistics
Number of adults in the US
with below-basic literacy skills:
Children in Sub-Saharan Africa
not enrolled in school:
30,000,000
– National Assessment of Adult Literacy
42,000,000
– WhiteHouse.gov
Percent of the world’s illiterate
population residing in Asia:
Average amount of school that most children
in Latin America attend:
73%
– UNESCO Institute for Statistics
5.4 years
– U.S. Agency for International Development

So as you begin compiling your list of books to read in 2013 or need to pick up a textbook as the new semester begins, seriously consider purchasing from Better World Books! Additionally, if you have a stack of used books lying around that you would like to donate, spread the gift of literacy worldwide and find a drop-off box nearest you.

dropbox-photoWhile we are on the topic of books, here’s the beginnings of my 2013 list.

  • Impact Investing: Transforming How We Make Money While Making a Difference by Antony Bugg-Levine & Jed Emerson
  • How to Be a Social Entrepreneur: Make Money & Change the World by Robert Ashton
  • Blessed Unrest: How the Largest Social Movement in History Is Restoring Grace, Justice, and Beauty to the World by Hawken, Paul
  • Leap of Reason: Managing to Outcomes in an Era of Scarcity by Mario Morino
  • Red Letter Christians: What if Jesus Really Meant What He Said? by Tony Campolo and Shane Claiborne
  • The High-Purpose Company: The Truly Responsible–And Highly Profitable–Firms That Are Changing Business Now by Christine Arena
  • Maybe One: A Personal and Environmental Argument for Single-Child Families by Bill McKibben
  • Eaarth: Making a Life on a Tough New Planet by Bill McKibben
  • Fordlandia: The Rise and Fall of Henry Ford’s Forgotten Jungle City by Greg Grandin
  • NW: Zadie Smith

Happy Reading (and Giving)!

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