Sarah Garnett

14/9/2011

 
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Books are powerful - they have the ability to change someone’s life. They
offer choices, whether it be to reconnect with a past interest, to learn or
to just escape from an often miserable day to day existence.

Sarah Garnett

In 2003 after the death of a young friend, Benjamin Andrew, Sarah decided to make herself useful by working as a volunteer.  She started helping serve meals to the homeless and disadvantaged in Sydney’s CBD. One evening Sarah noticed a man sitting under a streetlight reading a novel while waiting for the food van.  She started bringing him a few books and it was here The Benjamin Andrew Footpath Library began. The Footpath Library exists solely on donations of money and services. Currently it gives away 2500 new and secondhand books a month in Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane to homeless hostels and community organisations. The books are a gift, they are not returned.  For Sarah, the aim of The Footpath Library is to promote literacy, make books more accessible to homeless and disadvantaged people and change society’s attitudes to these members of our community.

http://www.footpathlibrary.org/


Photographer: Diane Macdonald
Location: Sydney

Ruchika Sahai

20/7/2011

 
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Every child is born with the ability and desire to do good. I wanted to create a product, a company, and a brand that instilled my sincere belief that it’s never too early to cultivate the will to make a difference in our children.

Ruchika Sahai

Sitting pregnant on the balcony one night with her husband, Ruchika was contemplating how they could instill the values and ideals that they held dear and the concept of making a difference into their children. Ruchika decided that she wanted to create a company based on the principal of reciprocity. She created Booda Brand on the premise of “One for You, One for Humanity.”  For every single Booda Brand product purchased, a book would be gifted to a child in need through the incredible organization Room to Read. The company makes organic newborn and baby clothes, each emblazoned with the words “I will make a difference,” and packaged in a gift box resembling a book. Last year, Oprah took notice and put the Booda Brand tees on the “O List”  in her magazine and on her website.   

http://www.roomtoread.org/

http://www.boodabrand.com/

Photographer: Diane Macdonald
Location: Sydney

Jennie Orchard

20/7/2011

 
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Room to Read was founded on the belief that World Change Starts with Educated Children® and since 2000, it has impacted more than six million children. Having personal connections with many of the countries where the organization is working, particularly Laos and South Africa, I am inspired to tell the story again and again, encouraging others to join the movement to change lives by delivering literacy and gender equality through education.

Jennie Orchard

Books, reading and literature have always been at the core of Jennie’s life. With a background in publishing, when she moved to Asia with her family in early 2002, she became involved in the non-profit world, initially contributing to a women’s organization (CWAJ) in Japan, then becoming involved with Room to Read while living in Hong Kong. In early 2008 Jennie returned to Sydney and led the team which has established a highly successful fundraising and awareness-raising presence for Room to Read in Australia, becoming Development Director for Australasia in 2010. Since launching with a Wine Gala in February 2009, nearly $5m has been raised and there is now a network of six volunteer chapters around Australia, with chapters also starting to develop in New Zealand. Jennie’s personal commitment to Room to Read derives from strong connections with many of the program countries, including South Africa and Laos. Her husband worked in Vientiane for three years and they celebrated their marriage there with a baci ceremony in October 1983. In February 2008, before returning to establish Room to Read in Australia, Jennie and Ivor visited a remote community in northern Laos to see the Room to Read school they funded to celebrate their twenty-fifth wedding anniversary.

http://www.roomtoread.org/australia

Photographer: Diane Macdonald
Location: Sydney