Books for Fiji
Desperately seeking children's and Young Adult fiction and non-fiction.
Libraries and schools are not often on the top of the list in recovery packages, but when fierce cyclones batter this small island nation, they too suffer losses. Thankfully, help is on its way in the form of donated books from public libraries in New Zealand.
Retired Librarian and Pacific Libraries Project coordinator, Jill Best, and her husband, Jack, have been collecting books and sending them to Fiji for over 15 years.
"We're particularly short of children's books this time," says Jill. "And publications suitable for teens. So we put out the call. Can any NZ library help?"
The next load of books from NZ libraries for the public and school libraries of Fiji will be heading off in about six weeks (mid-May). But not just any old books.
"Oh no. They have to be in good condition," says Jill, who is quite clear about the type of books that the islands’ communities need the most."Good condition, less than five years old and reflect the fact that English is a second language for most Fijians. So children's picture books are perfect."
Children’s non-fiction books on topics like crafts, cooking, nursing and biographies, again less than five years old (unless they're historical), are also much appreciated.
The other main player in the Pacific Libraries Project is Jill's daughter, Stella Best. She is a computer trainer and accompanies Jill to deliver training to librarians. It's a family affair funded by the Bests, so if you would like to help you can contact Jill HERE.
Main Photo: Jack and Jill Best, Smita Biswas and Philip King loading up books for Fiji.
Other photos: Stella Best teaching Subhag, Labasa Library, Suva Library - a Carnegie Building