World News It's All Relative Did You Know? Opinion On The Streets
Three Simon Fraser University students - Joseph Choi, Alex Venetis and Steffi Chua - have organized a book drive named “The BIG Book Drive” to collect books for the Salvation Army. Started by SFU Beedie School of Business project management students, this book drive will take place on March 19-20th at Salvation Army's Divisional Headquarters in Burnaby, BC. All books collected will be donated to the organization and will benefit their family support services and their other literacy-related programs.
The BIG Book Drive will take place at Salvation Army's Divisional Headquarters (3833 Henning Dr.) in Burnaby BC, from 10:00am - 6:00pm on March 19-20th to collect these books to benefit the low-income families and children in BC.

On February 26th, The BIG Book Drive team collected 3,500 books at Lansdowne Mall in Richmond, surpassing their initial goal of 2,000 books. The next BIG Book Drive event aims to collect thousands of books so that the Burnaby community can make a definite impact on literacy in BC.

According to Literacy BC, 40% of adults in British Columbia do not have the literacy skills needed to fully participate and succeed in today’s world. This presents over one million people who are under-equipped to cope with society's increasing informational demands. Having low literacy rates increases poverty and crime which hinders economic productivity; it indirectly affects our personal health and well-being overall.

“We are so incredibly thankful for the generosity of the Richmond community for donating over 3,500 books to our book drive. Initially, we were estimating that we would be able to reach just 2,000 books from both events," says Joseph Choi, one of the BIG Book Drive coordinators. "This is not the end, we still have one more event for the Burnaby community to donate their books and aid us in helping the Salvation Army. This time, our new goal will be 6,500 books."

Choi, a Richmond resident, emphasizes that The BIG Book Drive welcomes all sorts of books from children’s books and magazines to textbooks (with the exception of adult-oriented materials and newspapers).

“We want to donate books to an organization that already has programs in-place to increase literacy amongst low-income families and children, so we chose the Salvation Army,” says Alex Venetis. “People have lots of books lying around at home that can be redirected towards these communities.”
Salvation Army will distribute the books collected during The BIG Book Drive to its family support services and its other literacy-related programs. Books that cannot be redirected towards these programs will be recycled into new resources.

What started out as a small class project has now evolved into a well-organized community book drive. The BIG Book Drive is being sponsored by Richmond Scouts, Kin's Farm Market, Literacy BC and the Salvation Army. These organizations have been more than generous in donating their services and resources towards making this event happen.

“We are privileged to be able to attend a university like SFU,” says Steffi Chua. “There are many children, teenagers, and young adults who don’t have access to books that can improve their literacy skills. The books we have lying around at home can make a difference in someone’s life.”

Event Information:
March 19-20: The BIG Book Drive will take place at Salvation Army's Divisional Headquarters located at 3833 Henning Dr. in Burnaby, BC from 10:00am to 6:00pm on both days.

For more information, please visit:
www.thebigbookdrive.com


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