A BOOK charity which is helping to change the lives of people in poverty is celebrating its fifth anniversary.
Since 2007, Book Aid for Africa has sent more than 200,000 books for people of all stages of reading, making a substantial contribution.
The books have been sent to numerous countries across Africa and is continuing to provide the vital service.
Book Aid for Africa was the brainchild of Dr Elewechi Okike, a senior lecturer at the University of Sunderland, and has developed into a hugely recognised charity. It has won backing from high-profile personalities including TV presenter, Gok Wan.
Books are now being sent on a daily basis to help educate people from some of the world’s most deprived communities.
Dr Okike, the principal lecturer in accounting at the Wearside university, originally hails from Nigeria and was moved to do something when she went back to her home country and was left shocked by what she saw.
Having left the country in 1989 after teaching at a university in Lagos, Dr Okike returned to visit in 2000 and was appalled by the state of the libraries.
Her aim is to fill empty library shelves even in the remotest parts of Africa, with good quality books.
There will be a celebration event at CitySpace on Saturday afternoon, to mark the work of the charity.
Awards will be presented to recognise the efforts of volunteers.
Dr Okike, said: “The pleasure of children smiling when they see these books and the atmosphere of how they approach life, changes instantly. I can’t even explain in words the feeling I get when I see their faces and the difference it has made, it does make and will continue to make, it is so rewarding.”
The charity does rely on people donating money to make a difference in the second biggest continent and anyone who would like to make a donation should visit www.bookaidforafrica.com.