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Book Project

Update: August 2008

The Friends of Malawi Book Project no longer ships books through the U.S. Postal Service because mailing rates have become too high to support. FOM member Art Rutkin began shipping books to Malawi with sea cargo containers in 2008. More information please contact Art Rutkin, artrutkin at


The original Friends of Malawi Book Project was formally organized in 1999 under the auspices of Friends of Malawi. It was organized by two RPCVs, who had been shipping books to Malawian schools since returning to the U.S. in 1994.

The project's objectives are:

  • To educate the U.S. community on the book shortage in Africa and create a mechanism for individuals and organizations to share their books with Malawian schools and libraries.
  • To ship appropriate, donated books to Malawian schools and libraries.
  • To establish friendships and connections between American and Malawian school children.

The Book Project works with an average of 10-15 schools in the Portland, Oregon area. Books are donated from these schools' libraries. In addition, students from these schools organize book drives, collect school supplies, organize penpal programs and fund-raise to help defray freight costs associated with book shipments to Malawi.

Number of Books Shipped

1999: 3,225
2000: 6,200
2001: 3,400
2002: 3,280
2003: 4,772
2004: 10,570
2005: 6,346
2006 : 5,244 (YTD September)

Number of US schools donating/participating: 10
Number of Malawian libraries receiving shipments: 29

Libraries Helped

4 Community libraries and Health Center libraries
6 Secondary School libraries
Remainder are Primary Schools

Distinctions Received one of two Continuation of Service Grants awarded by the National Peace Corps Association in 2003.

Additional information is contained in the annual FOM book project newsletter. They may be downloaded from the links below. Look to the most current newsletter for the freshest contact information. If you have additional question, please email Shannon at, .

Book Project Newsletter 2000
Book Project Newsletter 2002
Book Project Newsletter 2003
Book Project Newsletter 2004
Book Project Newsletter 2005
Book Project Newsletter 2006

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