Newsletter #16, December 2019

Our Reason for Existence

The 16nd shipment of books (7 pallets) to Lesotho since 2007 was completed on 4th December 2019 ready for shipping from The Barn very soon – booked for 11th December. It is the 14th shipment to Transformation Resource Centre (TRC). 17,343 books will be distributed by TRC early in 2020 to about 40 schools and youth institutions. The number of books is a record for a 7-pallet shipment!

The Directors and Volunteers of Books for Lesotho thank all the donors for giving us the task of sorting and packing your books. They will end up in schools that otherwise have no (or very little) library resource.


B4L is now seeking $13,604 by way of donations to cover shipment costs during 2019/20. To 30 November, general donations totalled $4,350 ($4.928 at the same time last year). This includes the regular donations from members of the Mitcham Exercise Group totalling $484 ($550 last year).

YOU can make a difference by making a one-off donation or by setting up a monthly-giving plan (this method helps us with budgeting). Please donate via GiveNow by clicking on the website – it takes you to a secure on-line donation system which has a very low cost to us.

Monetary donations are only used to cover shipping costs from Australia to Lesotho; we do not purchase books.

How has your contribution helped B4L achieve the B4L aims?

Total books shipped to 30 June 2019

The number of books sent in 15 shipments to Lesotho since inception in 2007 is 155,932 being loaded on 74 pallets and at a shipping cost of $58,687 (excludes “running costs”).

(Graphs not updated to include the 2019 TRC shipment described above.)


I am a teacher who has always enjoyed learning and helping young people to learn. Much of that learning has been by reading, often guided for a specific learning experience but nothing beats the freedom of choosing a book out of interest and for pleasure (as I now enjoy in retirement).

It is the purpose of Books for Lesotho to provide a range of books for school libraries in Lesotho so that students can choose books which are of interest to them, and thereby enhance their capacity to learn.

A few years back my wife Bev and I chatted with good friends David and Liz about their wish to assist a librarian in Lesotho who had a dream of setting up libraries in local schools that had limited resources. We happily offered a little time to help them sort and pack in their garage the books they had managed to source.

It is wonderful to now see the scope of their operation as an incorporated body. Thanks to the many schools and organisations and the people in them for continuing to provide good quality fiction and non-fiction books of interest to children of school age, and for the money that helps to send them. The children in Lesotho and their teachers are most grateful. I like that David and Liz have several times visited schools in Lesotho and seen the distribution of books in practice.

Brian is centre-right with other volunteers, Rob, Liz and Ray


During October, Nat Cooke, State Member for Hurtle Vale visited The Barn in support of the volunteers (the current number of volunteers is 9). Like other visitors, Nat was very interested in the efficient process – from receiving the books through to despatch to Lesotho.

Nat Cooke MP and 7 B4L volunteers

My job these days is to arrange books in groups of similar size for ready packing in boxes by experienced master packer Ray! In doing so I do a cross check on the quality and suitability of the previously sorted books for the intended age group. Much of the fun is working and chatting with colleagues for a meaningful purpose.

Brian Webber

Also, during October, we received this letter from Nicolle Flint MP, Federal Member for Boothby

Dear David.
I am writing to congratulate you and your volunteers on the extraordinary shipment of 4 pallets of books to Lesotho in recent months. [The shipment was to the Rotary Club of Maloti.]
You should be most proud of your achievements is 2019. I understand that you received several large donations from local schools, giving a big boost to your supplies, and enabling you to continue your wonderful work within our community.
I feel very proud to have such inspiring residents in our community. I thank you for your ongoing contributions and service.
I wish you all the very best in the year to come, and look forward to reading an update in your next newsletter.
Yours sincerely
Nicolle Flint MP

Keeping in the theme, Carolyn Power MP, State Member for Elder has her diary ready to book a visit early in 2020.

NEWS FROM THE BOARD and AGM – meetings held during November 2019

At the AGM, 3 retiring members of the Board were re-elected for 2-year terms. At the following meeting of the Board, David Linn was re-elected as Chairman and Wayne Turner as Treasurer.


Last day for 2019 – 13 December.
Re-opening – 22 January 2020 when we will be into packing for the Rotary Club of Maloti

Merry Christmas to you all – where ever you are in the world! May 2020 treat you well. Good reading!

David Linn
Chairman, Books for Lesotho