Registered Since: 2009-02-06 20:38:17
Posts by John:
Posted by John on 03.25.2011 at 9:43 am
We’re honored to announce that Better World Books has received two Social Innovation Awards today including “Best Social Investment Strategy” and the “Citizen’s Choice Award”. As always, we are grateful to you, the Better World community, for making these awards possible through your fantastic support!
The awards were handed out by Justmeans, “the world’s leading source of information and connections for people doing business better.” Cool!
Here’s the lowdown on the two awards:
The Best Social Investment Strategy award is given to companies that invest their financial assets in order to advance causes or programs that have both social and financial returns. At Better World Books we have invested our financial assets to scale the business and thereby scale our social impact – we’ve helped literacy around the world by raising over $9 million for literacy programs and helped save natural resources by re-using or recycling over 40 million books so far.
Other finalists for the Best Social Investment Strategy included J.P. Morgan, Pricewaterhouse Coopers, and Vodaphone Egypt. We’re honored to be in such great company.
For the Citizen’s Choice Award, anyone could vote on submissions. Since our idea was selected by the voting public, we’ll be featured within a USA Today insert called “The Power of Innovation”. So thanks for your votes! You’re helping get the word out about Better World Books every day, and now you’ve helped us reach a lot more people.
The runner up for the Citizen’s Choice Award was “The Best (Olive) Oil Producer” (http://thebestoilproducer.com/), a social enterprise aiming to serve the olive oil market better by connecting producers directly w/ customers & developing community on Lesvos, Greece.
1 Comment » | Tagged Company News, In the News, Uncategorized
Posted by John on 01.06.2011 at 11:41 pm
At Better World Books, we have outstanding opportunities for college students that we want to make sure you are aware of. When you BUY YOUR TEXTBOOKS AT BETTER WORLD BOOKS, you…
HELP THE PLANET.
What if you could help change the world and save cash? We know textbook prices can be off the charts, and we want to do all we can to save you money…as much as 90%! We have millions of new and used titles, and WE SHIP FREE TO ANYWHERE IN THE WORLD. Through carbon offsets, we also give you the opportunity to make sure your book is sent to you in an environmentally friendly way.
AND, any time you purchase books from us, we donate a pre-defined portion of the sale price to fund literacy and education non-profits working here in the U.S. and around the world. Great partners like Room to Read, The National Center for Family Literacy, Books for Africa, Worldfund, Invisible Children, the Robinson Community Learning Center, The Prison Book Program and Plan USA (working in Haiti) are delivering meaningful impact every minute of every day, thanks in part to the funding they are receiving from Better World Books (through the books you purchase!).
To date, we have:
– Raised over $9 million and donated over 3 million books to our non-profit literacy and education partners
– Re-used or recycled 53 million pounds of books, saving landfills
And these numbers are growing every minute of every day!
Thanks for your enthusiasm and your commitment to making your purchase dollars really mean something by supporting our mission to change the world…one book at a time.
Make sure to check us out at www.betterworldbooks.com, and stay tuned to find out how you can earn money by participating in our spring campus textbook drives.
All the best to you and yours in 2011,
President and CEO, Better World Books
3 Comments » | Tagged Uncategorized
Posted by John on 11.14.2010 at 11:21 am
You may recall the first winner of the Readers’ Choice Literacy Grant was READ, Reading Education Assistance Dogs. During a recent visit paid to our warehouse by Kathy Klotz, their executive director, I learned that November 14 has been designated National Reading Eduction Assistance Dogs Day. Got any good dogs in your life? Drop us a comment below.
SENATE RESOLUTION 338
IN THE SENATE OF THE UNITED STATES
Designating November 14, 2009, as ‘“National Reading Education Assistance Dogs Day”
- Whereas reading provides children with an essential foundation for all future learning;
- Whereas the Reading Education Assistance Dogs (R.E.A.D.) program was founded in November of 1999 to improve the literacy skills of children through the mentoring assistance of trained, registered, and insured pet partner reading volunteer teams;
- Whereas children who participate in the R.E.A.D. program make significant improvements in fluency, comprehension, confidence, and many additional academic and social dimensions;
- Whereas the R.E.A.D. program now has an active presence in 49 States, 3 provinces in Canada, Europe, Asia, and beyond with more than 2,400 trained and registered volunteer teams participating and influencing thousands of children in classrooms and libraries across the Nation;
- Whereas the program has received awards and recognition from distinguished entities including the International Reading Association, the Delta Society, the Latham Foundation, the American Library Association, and PBS Television;
- Whereas the program has garnered enthusiastic coverage from national media, including major television networks NBC, CBS, and ABC, as well as international television and print coverage:
Now, therefore, be it Resolved, That the Senate, in honor of the 10th anniversary of the R.E.A.D. program, designates November 14, 2009, as ‘“National Reading Education Assistance Dogs Day.”
Have your say » | Tagged Uncategorized
Posted by John on 06.25.2010 at 12:04 pm
Applications being accepted for $30,000 in library grants
Better World Books and the National Center for Family Literacy are teaming up again this year to provide grants for libraries with exceptional family programming.
Applications are now being accepted for the Better World Books/NCFL Libraries and Families Award. You can get more information and apply at online at http://www.famlit.org/BWB-library-award. Applications are due by Nov. 12, 2010.
NCFL anticipates awarding three $10,000 grant awards– one in each of the following three categories:
1) Local Friends of the Library programs
2) Public/academic libraries
3) Urban libraries
In addition, award recipients will receive scholarships to attend the National Conference on Family Literacy.
Last year’s winners are doing amazing things! Learn more about them here!
This will be the second year of the award and the latest partnership effort between our organizations, which together have raised more than $555,000 for NCFL’s programming since 2005.
Posted by John on 05.06.2010 at 10:00 am
As a triple bottom-line company and a B Corporation, we’re excited to let you know about recent progress in the social enterprise movement. On April 13, the state of Maryland signed into law a bill designating a new kind of company that creates social benefit and shareholder value.
This is kind of a big deal for Better World Books and companies like ours. Previously, there had not been a legal framework specifically designed for social enterprise – you either had to be a for-profit company, legally beholden to maximizing shareholder value, or a non-profit organization. Now there is a legal framework for companies that do well by doing good and who strive to generate both social and shareholder returns.
B Lab (the certifying body for B Corporations) had this to say:
“This was a historic day that recognized the growing movement of entrepreneurs, investors, consumers, employees, and communities that are harnessing the power of business to solve social and environmental problems. The legislation could not have passed without the concrete example and the leadership of nearly 300 Certified B Corporations that are speaking with collective voice about doing business in a different way.”
Similar legislation is working its way through in several states. You can learn more about this trend on the B-Corporation blog.
3 Comments » | Tagged Company News, Impact, b corporation, Social Enterprise
Posted by John on 04.27.2010 at 2:11 pm
We recently had a bark-tastic visit from some very sweet book and kid loving dogs. These particular dogs and their people were representing the Intermountain Therapy Animals’ Reading Assistance Eduction Dogs (R.E.A.D.) program who recently won our Readers’ Choice Literacy Grant.
While Gina, a gorgeous black lab and Abbie, a very friendly golden retriever stole the show, we also had the pleasure of learning more about R.E.A.D. from their people, Melissa Saul and Merilee Kelley.
For instance, R.E.A.D. teams consist of an appropriately tempered dog and their owner (there are 2,500 teams around the world). The dogs and their people go through rigorous screening and training programs before working with children. According to Melissa, the training is more for the people than the dogs. That would certainly be true of me – my English setter/spaniel/who-knows-what-else dog, Carmen, would get it right away while I was still on square one. Read more…
2 Comments » | Tagged Company News, Our Partners
Posted by John on 04.07.2010 at 11:35 am
The founder of Read International, Rob Wilson, has won the Enterprising Young Brit Award 2010 in the Social, Environmental, and Ethical category. Read International is a non-profit literacy partner of Better World Books in the UK.
Congrats, Rob! We’re proud to work with you.
A few words about Rob and Read International from the Enterprising Young Brits website:
“READ International is an innovative social venture that works successfully as a business whilst providing social, ethical and environmental benefits. With a network of 40 student volunteer-led projects, READ International collects disused books from UK schools and distributes them through out Uganda and Tanzania.”
“Inspired by a friends Gap Year teaching in Tanzania, Robert attempted to find a solution for the lack of teaching resources there. With a similar syllabus as in England, the solution seemed obvious to Robert and the idea for READ International was born. The company has not only saved tonnes of teaching resources from UK landfill, it has also supported over 260,000 Tanzanian school children to date.”
You can see all the Enterprising Young Brit award winners here.
Posted by John on 03.25.2010 at 3:44 pm
Readers’ Choice Literacy Grant Applications Now Being Accepted
Program Expanded to Two $20,000 Grants
We’re delighted to announce that we are now accepting applications for our Spring 2010 Readers’ Choice Literacy Grant.
It’s double the fun and double the funds this season as we expand from a single winner to awarding two $20,000 grants.
As before, any organization that promotes literacy can apply and readers will have the chance to vote for their favorite project. Afraid your organization can’t drive enough votes to win? Fear not. We know sometimes good things come in small packages and big ideas come from small organizations, so we’ve made a change! This season, our first $20,000 grant will go to the project with the most votes and our second $20,000 bonus grant will be selected by our literacy committee. This way we believe we’ll be able to get the funding to the most promising ideas and organizations, large and small alike.
Ready to start voting? Well hold on a second…voting for the Spring 2010 grant starts June 1, 2010. We’ll have links right here on the blog when it’s time.
Need more Readers’ Choice? Meet our Fall 2009 winner and finalists!
Posted by John on 02.15.2010 at 11:48 am
Erin Sawaya and Michelle Viegas of Worldfund recently paid a visit to Better World Books’ distribution center where they provided us an update on their progress improving literacy in Latin America. Better World Books book donors and readers have helped raise over $150,000 for Worldfund since they became a literacy partner in 2007.
Worldfund’s mission is to raise the quality and relevance of education in Latin America—the key to transforming lives and breaking the cycle of poverty. They do this through scholarship funding and through teacher and principal training programs. There is an excellent introductory video about Worldfund on their website.
Photo: Michelle Viegas, Director of Programs & Strategic Outreach, and Erin Sawaya, Vice President of Development and Communications, speak to Better World Books employees.
Presentations from our partners always have loads of great information, but there’s usually a key fact or two that jump out for me. In this case it was that $600 can provide a scholarship to a child for a full year (in case you’re interested here’s a link to the donations page). Read more…
Have your say » | Tagged Our Partners, latin america, literacy, Starfish School, worldfund
Intermountain Therapy Animals Reading Education Assistance Dogs (R.E.A.D.) wins $20,000 Readers’ Choice Literacy Grant
Posted by John on 01.21.2010 at 10:24 pm
Do not underestimate the power of man’s best friend! The winner of the first Readers’ Choice Literacy Grant is an innovative program that uses therapy dogs to help improve kids reading, the Intermountain Therapy Animals (ITA) R.E.A.D. program.
The reading-challenged kids in the program often suffer from low self-esteem and view reading as a chore. But dogs don’t judge, so reading to them removes inhibitions and helps a child focus. It makes reading fun and creates a positive, memorable experience that stays with kids for a long time.
In the R.E.A.D. program, each child reads aloud to a therapy dog in either their local library or school. The books are age and level appropriate, and often animal related in topic. After a child accomplishes the reading of ten books (which may take weeks, depending on skill level), they receive a brand new book of their choice that can be “pawtographed” by their canine reading companion. Thus, books are sent into the homes of the children. You can read all the details about the program here.
I had the pleasure of calling Kathy Klotz, Executive Directory of ITA, to deliver the news. (That was fun – it’s not every day I get to give away $20,000!). After she caught her breath, Kathy was good enough to compose a statement for our press release:
We are simply overjoyed to be chosen as recipients of the Readers’ Choice Literacy Grant, and so grateful to Better World Books and every single person who voted for R.E.A.D. We know the competition was tight and every finalist had great merit. Our goal is for every child to grow up loving books and reading, as the foundation for a lifetime of learning. Because of the great power of the human-animal bond, reading to a dog is an ideal way to build skills, confidence and, not least, great enthusiasm.
Well said, Kathy! Especially when referring to the competition participants – we received a host of proposals from so many organizations that are passionate about literacy – it was wonderful. You can read all the finalists’ proposals here. I’d like to thank everyone who participated, it is inspiring to see so many people out to improve our world through literacy!
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