The other day I was playing around on Twitter when a Portland-based account shared the most amazing story–a local woman was running a library for the city’s homeless, who didn’t qualify for a regular library cards because they had no home address. I’m a firm believer in the power of reading (and I would assume my readers are too!), but it had honestly never occurred to me how homeless people get books. Of course they may have other things to worry about (food, shelter for the night, season-appropriate clothing), but I think it’s wonderful she is providing a service we all take for granted to people in need.

Street Books (photo from the website, click-through to see the post)

Street Books is run by Laura Moulton, an artist and writer here in Portland. She started the mobile library in June, with donated books. Books are checked out and returned using a card catalogue system, and books are hauled around in a cart attached to a bike. The website for Street Books is wonderful, featuring library patrons and the books the check out. Along with a photo of the person and their book(s), Laura often includes a little bit about the person and why they picked those books. She has also highlighted some donors and sponsors of the project, and includes a donation page so anyone can help fund Portland’s mobile library.

As you all know, I’ve got a rather large collection of books. I’ve been going back and forth on what to do with all the ones I’ve read–keep them, sell them to a used book store, donate them somewhere, ect. With all these books and such a great cause, I may just go through my collection and see if I’ve got any of the requested books that Street Books patrons have requested!

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