30 Mar 2010

Solomons benefit from New Zealand book drive

3:07 pm on 30 March 2010

About 7,000 books weighing 2.2 tonnes have been donated to residents in Solomon Islands.

The books were collected from Palmerston North residents in New Zealand within 10 days and were delivered to Honiara by the Royal New Zealand Air Force.

Suzette Alderdice initiated the project with a friend who works for the Regional Assistance Mission to Solomon Islands.

She says the idea came to mind after her daughter, who had returned from Solomon Islands, told her how scarce and expensive books were.

"I flicked an email out on the Monday morning to just all my girlfriends and just a couple of other friends and to one of my tenants in one of my flats. And they promptly flicked it out to other people. So it grew rapidly at a huge rate. And by the third day we had books coming out of our ears."

Suzette Alderdice says the mixture of children's books, text books and novels has been donated to schools and a new library in Honiara.