I've been thinking about my second project recommendation and it has to be about books! Amal has been reading non-stop for the past 2 weeks, and it came so sudden.... Before that, he would only look at books with images! And I can see how much he's enjoying it, how he starts imagining what he's reading and I'm so happy that he's finally opened that part of life where children are able to roam free with imagination just by reading a book...

I remember when I was 7 and I had just moved to Boston with my family, and my mother took me and my brother to the public library. I was hooked! I couldn't stop reading, I even read at night (in secret) with a small night light. I was devouring Judy Blume, Enid Blyton, Roald Dahl, and even until this day, I feel so happy curled up reading a book.... and every child should feel that way!

That's why I feel it's so important to give that opportunity to every child. Unfortunately in Indonesia, reading is not part of the culture, especially in the rural areas. Besides that, buying a book is not an option if you live on less than $2 (Rp. 19,000) a day. That's why in Bukit Batu, Central Kalimantan, Yayasan Usaha Mulia (YUM) created a community library where now more than 500 visitors come every month to check out the books, and also participate in other educational activities such as the English Club, arts and crafts, watching movies, dance classes, etc. It's not just a place to borrow books, but it's become an educational facility.
If you want to help this project, YUM is working with GlobalGiving, a philanthropic site, to receive donations from all over the world. Here's the link: Help Promote Good Reading Habits in Kalimantan 

There are many other organizations who work in this direction and with the same goal such as Yayasan Pustaka Kelana (which my mother and aunt founded by the way), "Drive Books, Not Cars"Taman Bacaan Pelangi, and countless others...

So if you're a book worm like I am, and you realize just how precious a book is (and a library), try to find out how you can help, either by donating money or books or your time at a nearby library for disadvantaged kids :)