A van and a dream – that’s how The Free Book Buggie (TFBB) got started. Debbie, a passionate reader since childhood, set out to find a solution to a growing problem in our communities: lack of access to age-appropriate children’s books.
As a volunteer mom, she and a very good friend Sue, created an “I Love to Read,” program for their children’s elementary school that got bigger and better each year, for 11 years.
While traveling in Brazil, Debbie and her daughter Meghan saw a colorful VW bus filled with books, surrounded by tables also filled with books. That was enough of an inspiration for the light bulb to go on. They sat down in the park with a tiny little notebook and brainstormed names for the nonprofit.
Debbie knew that there were two challenges many families faced: financial resources to purchase books, and the transportation to get to the books. She set out to find a way to solve those challenges and the answer was – fill her van with children’s books, take them to children where they live and learn, and give them away for free. That mini van became known as The Free Book Buggie.
TFBB partners with cities, schools, and many other community organizations to reach the children that need resources the most.
Over 275,000 books, 300 plus partnerships, and well over 400 volunteers later, the original “Buggie” grew up and is now a repurposed shuttle bus, the new Free Book Buggie.