African Library Project

Merlin's Book Drive - Help Build a Library in Botswana

08/25/2018 to 12/09/2018
Langley, Canada

We are working with the African Library Project to provide books to eager readers in Africa who have very few books. Please help us by collecting and delivering gently used books or by raising money to help pay for shipping to Africa. It takes only 1000 books and $500 (plus a little elbow grease!) to start a single library and make a huge difference in children’s lives.

This book drive is organized by ...

My name is Merlin Tselios and I am a 5th grade student from British Columbia, Canada. I am very proud of participating in the African Library Project. I believe that education makes people make smart decisions for their future life and the future of our planet. There are many kids living in poor communities in the world. African kids in very poor villages are kids that need to be educated to give them the same dreams as we have. Please be part of this book drive which needs to collect 1,000 preschool - 4th grade reading level books - gently used.

We want to start a library in Africa because...

In some countries in Africa, most of the kids of my age do not have the privilege of reading a variety of books and have fun or get knowledge as we do in Canada. So I decided to start this book drive to be one of the reasons that a kid of my age or younger can have access to a free library.

About our African Partners...

The African country that I decided to send and start a library is Botswana.

My African Library partner in Botswana is Taung Primary School. I am the only book drive matched with this school and they are thrilled that we are helping them!

Taung Primary School is at the southeast point of Botswana. It is close to the borders of South Africa.

Botswana is a country in southern Africa. It borders South Africa to the south and east, Namibia to the west, and Zimbabwe to the east. It is a very small country, actually it is smaller than Alberta. In Botswana, 30% of the population lives below the poverty line. Their poverty affects the children in Botswana who do not have access to healthcare, nutritious food, and good education.

Please contribute these kinds of books...


* Preschool board books
* Children’s picture books
* Children’s fiction and non-fiction
* Early readers
* Children’s dictionaries/ picture dictionaries/ thesauruses
* Children’s encyclopedias/picture encyclopedias
* Educational preschool up to 4th grade books in:
math, English, geography, health, and science
* Story books with universal themes (friendships, adventure, animals, love)
* Children's books teaching life skills about health, hygiene, adolescence and careers
* Accurate up-to-date atlases
* Books about Africa or African-Americans
* Educational children's science and literary magazines in good condition
* Brain teasers, flash cards, educational games and puzzles

Books that CANNOT be sent to the African Library Project:

• Books about the United States or Canadian history or government (but DO SEND books about African-Americans)
• Books about North American or religious holidays (Easter, Halloween, Christmas, 4th of July, Thanksgiving, April Fools Day, Valentine’s Day, Chanukah, etc.)
• Books that evangelize or promote a particular religion
• Magazines EXCEPT for children's educational magazines and National Geographic less than 5 years old

The books may be paperback or bound; New books are welcome but it is expected that gently used books will be the more common donation.

Here's how you can contribute your books...

I have started my book drive and donations on Saturday, August 25th, 2018 and it will go through Friday, March 15th, 2019. You may email me for instructions for where to send your books.

We need to raise funds for shipping the books...

It needs $500 to ship the books to New Orleans, where they will ship the books to Botswana, Africa for us. However, I have already collected this amount within a week of my starting day of my drive. Therefore I do not need your contribution with money for shipping the books.

Here are some ways that you can help...

It would be great if you could share this link with other people so to help this book drive be completed earlier that the due date so the books will be shipped earlier to Botswana.

Contact us to find out more

Name: Merlin - Contact me for any information!

Progress Report

Our Goal 1000 books $500 fundraising
Results so far
(updated: 9/12/2018)
1031 books $500 fundraising


* I would like to thank my sister Maya Tselios for donating all her 150 books that she loved as a kid, as well as for the $300 of her allowance that she offered to cover part of the shipping funds.

* I would like to thank Emily and Michael Hadikin for their kind contribution to this cause by generously donating 91 books of theirs!

* I would like to thank my teacher Mrs. Maggie Fraser who supported me so greatly by advertising my book drive on the school page on the very first day of school.
I am also grateful to her for collecting 423 books to support my book drive! I also thank all the staff of my school EBUS Academy who contributed to this cause to happen!

* I would like to thank my classmate Kiril L. for his contribution to my book drive! He sent me 45 of his own books and 2 educational games!

* I would like to thank my friends Mason, Apollo, and Inca Scott! They responded immediately and generously donated 240 of their books to support my book drive!

* I would like to thank again my sister Maya Tselios who published my book drive cause on her Facebook group page and managed to gather 82 books from her classmates at UBC!

* Finally, I am thrilled to donate all of my savings in my piggy bank to cover the rest of the shipping expenses.

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