Luis Soriano Delivers Literacy By Donkey to Children in Colombia
Primary school teacher Luis Sariano believes education is valuable, and delivers learning resources to children across Colombia with his burromobile.
You’re probably familiar with bookmobiles - buses or vans filled with library books that serve communities with no libraries of their own - but how about a biblioburro?
Luis Soriano, a primary school teacher in Colombia, is putting a twist on the traditional mobile library in his native country, where children in remote villages have little access to schools or textbooks. Many of the children are illiterate, as are their parents. Because schools are often many miles away and the children are unable to complete their homework, they often drop out before they reach high school.
Soriano is hoping that he and his donkeys can change all that. Twice a week, he loads up two burros with 120 children’s books and educational resources and sets off on one of the animal’s backs. He typically travels for about four hours to reach his destination, where dozens of children are waiting eagerly to see Soriano’s selection of books.
Even though Soriano’s journey to each village is long, he takes the time at each location to share a lesson with the children, to help them with homework assignments, and to give them the opportunity to choose some books to borrow. Soriano’s travels rotate between 15 different communities, so his rare arrival is an occasion for joy and excitement for the village children.
“You can just see that the kids are excited when they see the biblioburro coming this way. It makes them happy that he continues to come,” Dairo Holguin, whose children are part of Soriano’s program, told CNN. “For us, his program complements what the children learn in school. The books they do not have access to ... they get from the biblioburro.”
Soriano has logged about 4,000 hours on donkeyback since beginning the program twenty years ago, and he’s endured a fractured leg and an encounter with bandits. But despite the difficulties of traveling the dangerous Colombian terrain, Soriano has no plans to stop the program anytime soon. He believes that the books he provide to the children can serve as a lifeline to raise them from poverty. In his eyes, the power of literature is life-changing.
That’s “how a community changes and the child becomes a good citizen and a useful person,” Soriano said. “Literature is how we connect them with the world.”Filed under: Animals and Pets, Arts and Culture, Heroes, Non-Profits,
Liked this? You'll love these, too:
How to Turn Your Child into a Lifelong Bookworm
Want your kids to read more books? Here are a few proven ways to help them catch the bookworm bug. Read More
Stories of Awesome Dads for Father’s Day
It's Father's Day this weekend, and here are some inspiring stories of dads in historic and modern times. Read More
25 Rules for Mothers of Boys
Tabitha Studer shares some parenting advice for women raising young boys. Read More
Positive Stories from the Aurora, Colorado Movie Theater Shooting Tragedy
Here are a few signs of hope to come out of the tragic shooting at "Batman Rises" in Aurora, Colorado. Read More
Tim’s Place: The Restaurant that Serves Breakfast with a Side of Hugs
Tim Harris, a young man with Down's syndrome, hasn't let his disability stop him from opening a restaurant in New Mexico. Read More
To our free daily newsletter, featuring good news from around the world, exclusive interviews with changemakers, guest columns, and subscriber-only weekly giveaways and special offers. Your privacy is secure with us, we will never spam you or sell your email address. Enter your email address below or click here to learn more about what you will receive.
- Stanislav Petrov: The Man Who Saved the World by Doing Nothing
- Miracle Fruit Makes (Almost) Everything Delicious
- Hachiko: The World’s Most Loyal Dog
- Liam Hoekstra, Superbaby: Toddler Born with Superhuman Strength
- Mugging Attempt Gets Thwarted by Real-Life Ninjas