Travel Blogger Tuesday – Passports with Purpose Edition

Reading is such an important part of my life and I can’t even imagine not being able to read for any reason.  I can’t imagine life without the smell of the library, the sound of a book spine cracking open for the first time, and the stacks of brightly colored books on my table just begging me to drop my chores and pick them up.  I will never forget what I felt inside when I finished reading Gone with the Wind for the first time in high school.  To this day, it is my favorite book.  Its tattered cover shows so much wear and tear but all I see is love for a book that kept me company at night when I couldn’t sleep and traveled to several countries with me.  Yes, I did lug that 1037 page tome with me during several trips.


Reading books is not just a favorite pastime, but also part of my career.  As an English teacher, I spent ten years teaching over 800 children to learn to love (or at least tolerate) reading…reading of any kind.  That is the beauty of books.  There is so much reading material from short stories, novels, magazines, poetry collections, nonfiction, comic books and more that it was rare that I couldn’t come up with something that a student would at least try to read and enjoy.  Once I started teaching 9th grade, I was always amazed each year by my students’ reactions towards Fahrenheit 451.  Even the students who hated reading were appalled that the characters actually started fires and burned books.  Now that I stay at home with my children, I love to watch their love for books continue to grow into a mild obsession like my own.

To me, there is nothing more amazing than watching a child read a sentence for the first time and realize that they pronounced it correctly.  Or watching a teenager pick apart a passage in a classic that they would never have chosen to read themselves and get it.  Or helping a child pick out a book in the library.  Or trying to get the attention of a tween that has been pulled so far into a story that they can’t even hear you talking to them.

A life without that?  No thank you.

This year, Passports with Purpose is working to raise $80K  to help Room to Read build two libraries in southern and eastern Zambia.  This is a project I can stand behind.  Not only because of the amazing people behind Passports with Purpose and their previous success, but also because we have friends who run an orphanage in the south of Zambia.

I can’t help but wonder if this library will in some way affect them and the mission that they have chosen as their life’s work.  What an amazing thought…

So how can you help?  Travel bloggers all over the world have procured amazing prizes that are up for grabs.  The prizes range from hotel stays to several Kindle Fire eReaders to gift certificates.  Donate $10 at a time and put your name in the hat for the prizes that you are interested in.  Who knows? You just might win something great while helping to build libraries in Zambia!

What are you waiting for?  Open your pocketbooks.  Open your hearts.  Put books into the hands of both children and adults alike.  Donate.